My opinion on the changes to Cameron and MacKinnon Hall
As a previous resident of Cameron Hall, I feel the need to voice my opinion on the decision to make Cameron Hall and MacKinnon Hall co-ed residences as of September 2018. The traditions upheld in these building for years have become a part of every student who has lived in these buildings and to take away the place that bonds every TNT Tiger, MacPherson Mustang, MacDonald Highlander, MacNeil Marauder and Chillis Chick together is misguided and a decision made without the input and desires of students and alumni of the university. These are the only houses left on campus that are single-gendered and we are proud of it. We do not feel the need to conform to the new normal standards of being co-ed.
I remember walking into TNT for the first time and everyone was saying “welcome home” which at first, was hard to believe after spending 18 years calling home wherever my parents were. The girls I lived with quickly became family and to think there would be girls moving into Cameron Hall in the future and not getting their tiger tail during frosh week, learning the TNT chants, getting to experience TNT/ Chillis or Pail and Shovel is deplorable. Every house cup that brings about the house rivalry is a part of what makes residence such an exciting experience. Seeing everyone come together for TNT/Chillis (the only female house cup on campus) is a feeling that cannot be replaced. This was my second year playing as a TNT Tiger and to think there’s a possibility there will not be a TNT/ Chillis Cup next year is absolutely heartbreaking.
The support system that is 90 sisters is one that empowers the women who live in these residences to speak of their experiences, whether they be good or bad. The recent news that has come about in Cameron Hall does not define us all and it certainly doesn’t define single-gendered residences. Incidences of sexual assault are occurring at every university in Canada and in every residence. The fact that the victims felt safe enough to come forward is applaudable and is strongly due to their home and family they made by choosing to be a TNT Tiger. It is not only the Tigers that will stand by you through the rough times it’s also the men in MacPherson and MacDonald. The same goes for living across the street in MacKinnon Hall who form their own families and uphold their own traditions. Tearing down something that is not broken should not be the solution for these original residences. As stated on the St. Francis Xavier University website “Our close-knit residence environment is at the heart of the StFX experience.” If something is at the heart of StFX why are you trying to destroy it?