Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

I can't provide the help you need

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I received an email yesterday from a student at a university somewhere in Manitoba — given what an educated bunch you are, you’d recognize the name of the school in a heartbeat.

I’ve left the grammar and spelling and syntax alone, but have redacted the names, all but one of which did not include a surname.

Here we go...and remember, this comes from a university student:

"Hello Nick my name is XXX XXX I think you should check this story out I’m a student here at the U of XXX the reason for my email is this the unversity has screwed me over they have lied to me and ignored me. They only give us students 2 options which are drop or add classes what about if I just to to switch classes or transfer there is no bylaw that says cannot do this. All I ever here is lies from the chairs they are not taking me seriously. They think just giving me back a 50% off credit will do there wrong they are ignoring the problem and the issue maybe with your help they will not ignore me. All I wanted to do was to transfer classess not drop it. These are some of the names of people who have ether ignored me or lied XXX so called student advocate then there’s XXXX XXXX professor then there’s XXX from Business who makes excuses all the time and doesn’t listen to me. Then there’s XXX same thing as XXX know there’s XXX from the presidents office. I need your help to change things around here please help Nick."

So I replied, telling student XXX that I couldn’t follow any of this, and suggested he/she consult the student council for help. It turns out that the student council is apparently part of the problem and not part of the solution...sigh....

Student XXX insists he/she wants to sit down with me face-to-face so that I can unravel all this and put together a story.

No, sorry, I don’t think I can provide the appropriate help.

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About Nick Martin

Nick Martin is the old bearded guy at the back of the newsroom, the most experienced reporter at the Winnipeg Free Press, having started his career in Ontario in 1971.

He’s been covering education for the Free Press since the spring of 1997, after decades primarily covering municipal politics, including a four-year stint at the Ontario legislature for the London Free Press.

Nick moved to Manitoba in 1988 with his Winnipeg-born wife, who is a professor at the University of Manitoba. They have two kids, both of whom graduated from Grant Park High School: son Chris and daughter Gillian.

Nick has won a national journalism award from the Canadian Association of University Teachers, two Manitoba Human Rights Journalism awards, and the Ontario Reporters Association investigative award.

Nick is a long-distance runner, having finished and survived 18 marathons and 15 half-marathons and 30-kilometre races, and having (barely) survived 10 years as an outdoor and indoor soccer coach.

Nick became a soccer referee in 2007, delighting in his 60s in outrunning 16-year-olds and keeping his distance from obstreperous coaches and parents.

Nick and his wife have discovered a mutual love for kayaking at their Whiteshell cottage, and are both regulars at the Reh-Fit Centre. They hold season tickets to both the Manitoba Theatre Centre and the Warehouse, and as empty nesters, have rediscovered the joys of an active winter vacation.

A native of Jarrow-on-Tyne, England, Nick is a member of the Toon Army as a Newcastle United supporter, and a proud citizen of Leafs Nation.

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