KPU shows money not everything

It’s no secret that colleges and universities could always use some extra cash. So it’s highly notable that Kwantlen Polytechnic University turned down $300,000 from Trans Mountain Pipelines last week.

The oil-pumping firm had offered the money – doled out over 20 years in small increments for bursaries and small scholarships, mostly – as part of its campaign for the twinning of its pipeline, which runs straight through north Langley.

Not surprisingly, the Kwantlen First Nation has not been entirely enthusiastic about the prospect of an expanded oil line running through its traditional territory. They are intervenors in the National Energy Board hearings that will determine whether or not the project goes forward.

The protest against the expansion last April, one of the largest this side of the river, began on the Kwantlen First Nation reserve, and was organized by Kwantlen member Brandon Gabriel.

Seeing the college named after them take money from Trans Mountain apparently provoked some discussions between the two Kwantlens.

Normally, we would expect this kind of thing to be brushed off. The money would go to environmental education and helping students, the university could say.

But the leaders at KPU seem to have sincerely listened to the concerns raised by the First Nation’s leadership. And last week, they announced they were pulling out of the deal with Trans Mountain.

It’s no surprise that those who are against the pipeline expansion – and there are many – have been pleased with the news.

But fans of educational independence in general should be pleased.

Major corporations always make these donations with few or no strings, maybe just naming rights. But such donations are made as part of public campaigns for goodwill. Universities must remain places of free speech, and they must not only be free, they must be seen to be free of outside influences. KPU’s decision helps keep them above the fray.

– M.C.

 

 

Just Posted

For one volunteer, fond memories as the Canadian Museum of Flight readies for the holidays

‘Christmas in the air’ at Langley aviation history exhibition

TransLink reveals new plans for proposed Surrey-Langley SkyTrain

No cost estimates, but the Fraser Highway line is expected to open by 2025

Tsumura Basketball Invitational wraps with a hard-fought win for the Panthers at Langley Events Centre

‘We knew if we stayed together as a team and kept the ball moving, we were going to come through’

VIDEO: Giants earn seventh straight win while playing at Pacific Coliseum

G-Men return home for their next game at the Langley Events Centre Friday against the Silvertips.

VIDEO: Celebrities support Langley Christmas food and toy drive

Sexual abuse survivor organized annual event for people in need

VIDEO: This B.C. school leads country in vaccine donations to UNICEF

Federally funded Kids Boost Immunity uses quizzes to earn vaccinations

Break-in at home of detained Chinese Huawei executive

Meng Wanzhou was detained in Vancouver on America’s request

5 to start your day

TransLink reveals new plans for proposed Surrey-Langley SkyTrain, 81-year-old woman waits 90 minutes for a taxi in Pitt Meadows and more

Natural gas rates will go up in B.C. on Jan. 1

Regions could pay up to $68 more

Top House Dems raise prospect of impeachment, jail for Trump

It could be an “impeachable offense” if it’s proven that President Donald Trump directed illegal hush-money payments to women during the 2016 campaign.

Macron addresses France amid protests; is it too late?

Paris monuments reopened, cleanup workers cleared debris and shop owners tried to put the city on its feet again Sunday.

CUPE calls off Flair Airlines job action citing job security concerns

The union says it’s going to challenge Flair’s move at the Canada Industrial Relations Board before proceeding with any job action.

Trump looking at several candidates for new chief of staff

Trump’s top pick for the job, Nick Ayers, is out of the running and Trump is now soliciting input on at least four individuals.

Canadian physicist collects Nobel Prize

Canada’s Donna Strickland is one of three winners of this year’s Nobel Prize for Physics.

Most Read