A campus community is not complete without a campus pub

Durham College and UOIT students are missing out on an important post-secondary experience: going to the campus pub.

The lack of a pub on the main campus creates a gap in the school community.

Queens University has The Queen’s Pub. Trent University has The Ceilie. York University has Shopsy’s. But Durham and UOIT only have The Simcoe House Ales and Grill, which is located at the Campus Ice Centre: a 450 metre walk across Conlin Road on a sidewalk that ends before it reaches the Centre.

While this pub is (technically) on campus, it is open to the general public.

Public skates happen Monday to Friday. There are bookable ice pads, girls’ hockey on weekends, Oshawa Minor Generals games and practices in the evenings. The last thing a college pub needs are parents and kids running around.

Durham College and UOIT students need a “Moe’s Tavern” from The Simpsons: a place where stories are shared over drinks, friends are made, and maybe even a little bit of mischief happens.

E.P. Taylor’s used to fill that void. But it closed in 2016.

On the now-closed campus pub, E.P. Taylor’s Facebook page, commenters post about good memories future DC/UOIT generations will miss.

One comment by Ryan Gordon reads, “I used to go there for Karaoke Nights on Mondays when I was doing a two-year Culinary Management program at Durham College…Sad, but I had good memories of the place, which was the best part of my second time as a college student. Miss it!”

No more live music shows or karaoke nights: arguably, all things college/university students should be able to access on campus.

What has been put in place of the pub doesn’t compare. The Esports gaming arena will house online gaming competitions.

Who does that serve?

According to Global Sports Matter, 75 per cent of Esports fans aged 13 – 40 are male and only 25 per cent are female.

Is the Esports gaming arena going to offer the same gender diversity as a campus pub would?

An article published on The Wireless in May talks about the toxic environment of online gaming and how women often become the target of these verbal assaults and even threats.

How will Durham College make this space gender inclusive?

The campus community needs a non-academic space to call their own: a place where the two campuses (Durham College and UOIT) can mingle and see themselves as a whole, not two separate entities.

With all of the renovations, new builds and upgrades Durham College and UOIT are getting, an on-campus pub needs to be included. A campus community is just not complete without a campus pub and an Esports gaming arena will not fill that gap.