The exact particulars of the incident that precipitated this email aren’t totally clear.
Larry Bauer’s email to students only obliquely referenced the coitus in question.
“We have recently learned of students consuming alcohol in the building outside of officially sanctioned functions, and have also learned of students participating in activities of a very personal nature in certain study rooms,” he wrote.
“These activities contravene the student code of conduct, and may also contravene the Criminal Code.”
He assured students that campus enforcement will be watching like hawks.
“Our staff and Campus Enforcement will be monitoring the business building closely. Individuals engaging in inappropriate behaviour will be reported to the appropriate authorities, and may face significant sanctions or penalties,” he said. “Individuals found in the building after hours without proper authorization will be asked to leave.”
A second email, sent to faculty only, sheds a little more light on the situation.
“As some of you may have heard, last week a staff member discovered two students apparently having sex in a study room in the Business building,” Bauer wrote.
“This is the second time a staff member has walked in on students having sex in a study room in the past four years.”
Bauer tried to maintain a sense of perspective, but said this goes well beyond a bit of hanky panky between consenting business students.
“While twice in four years is certainly not an epidemic, this is just the number of times this kind of behaviour has been reported,” he said. “We have also had reports of empty beer and liquor bottles being found in the building, and have a report of a student smoking marijuana outside an entrance to the building.”
Bauer worried what this might do for the Memorial University school of business’s reputation.
“This type of behaviour does not just represent ‘youthful foolishness.’ It could have very real consequences for our students, our staff and faculty, and our reputation,” he said.
“Please contact Campus Enforcement immediately if you see students consuming alcohol outside of an officially recognized function, using drugs on university property, or discover students participating in inappropriate behaviour.”
Anecdotally, several sources have informed The Telegram that Memorial University has a long history of this sort of thing, in one form or another, and it’s by no means confined to the business school.
Apparently, the Queen Elizabeth II Library also has a reputation for being a preferred spot for such liaisons.
The Telegram requested a comment from the Memorial University school of business on this story. Dean Wilfred Zerbe was not available for an interview, but sent an emailed statement.
“The faculty recognizes that students balance their studies with work and social activities,” Zerbe said. “At the same time, we regularly remind students that rooms to which they have access are provided to support their studies and are not to be used for personal purposes. We remind students of their obligation to honour the student code of conduct and generally of the high standards we expect of them.”