Editorial: Is Thorold being ruined by students or skunks?

Photo credit: Thorold Edition


A divide has been created between Brock University students’ and residents of Thorold. The divide isn’t because of the two street parties over the last eight months or because a transit bus goes speeding down a local street. The rift between students and residents is because of the people who created the ‘Thorold — A City Being Destroyed By Students’ Facebook page and any other resident complaining about Brock students.

First off, welcome to a university town. As Brock continues to see enrollment numbers climb, it was quite obvious a new area like Winterberry would become student populated because more student housing is needed. Little advice: don’t believe everything a Realtor tells you.

Every city with a university is going to have loud weekends: specifically, Homecoming weekend, St. Patrick’s Day and Halloween. If Thorold is being destroyed by students, Western students must be ruining London, Guelph students are ruining Guelph and Hamilton is being destroyed by McMaster students.

Every adult was once 19-years-old, and probably remembers their party days. Students aren’t shutting streets down or throwing parties of 500 students every weekend. I agree all that can be excessive, but for the most part Brock students’ are more respectful than other universities.

Sure that is coming from a Brock student, so it doesn’t really count. However, let’s be honest, besides the two parties (one this past Homecoming and the other on St. Patrick’s Day), Brock students have done very little to be disruptive.

In fact, street parties were quite common around the Brock area about 10 years ago. Since Winterberry is new housing area, people are probably not that familiar with Brock students. Let’s just say last St. Patrick’s day wasn’t the first time Jacobson Avenue saw hundreds of students on it.

Again, I’m not saying a huge street party is a great idea. Should they happen? As long as Brock students are respectful, I say yes. Are there students that aren’t respectful and make all students look bad? Of course.

However, a Facebook page isn’t going to solve the problem. It has raised awareness, but also upset Brock students. This has led to a parody page called ‘Thorold — A City Being Destroyed by Skunks’.

I have seen some comments from Thorold and St. Catharines residents stating that their neighbours, Brock students, are respectful and they have no issues with them. It doesn’t take much to create a relationship — not a friendship — but get acquainted if you live beside students.

Again, only two street parties have happened in eight months. I’m sure if residents asked their student neighbours to give them a heads up if they are having a party/get together, students would have no issue communicating that.

In terms of the bus situation, calling students entitled because they won’t walk an extra five to 10 minutes to catch the bus on a main street is pretty pathetic. The word entitlement is easy to throw around, especially at millennials.

There’s a safe middle ground to all the problems Thorold residents are having with Brock students. The middle ground isn’t a finger-pointing Facebook page, so instead of hiding behind a computer screen and being entitled to your social media, get out and just have a conversation with your student neighbours.

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