Columns, Opinion

KIRLAND: Every school needs a store

It’s great that Boston University’s School of Management has a Starbucks. It’s a perfect symbol of the corporate world to which all SMG students will someday belong. The only problem I have with that specific Starbucks is that people look at me funny when I use a gift card to get a box of apple juice and a glazed donut. I guess it isn’t a breakfast that any self-respecting, aspiring business student would get. But honestly, I don’t like coffee, and I prefer a fatty donut over any scone or whatever other ‘organic’ crap Starbucks sells. And I’m not an aspiring business student, but as I was standing in line getting my apple juice and donut the other day, I started thinking – every school within BU should have a store or restaurant that is reflective of its student body.

Personally, I don’t think the Starbucks is enough for SMG. The building is huge and the egos and aspirations for a lot of the students are bigger. So why not add another shop? My idea is a store called The SMG Tool Store. It can be equipped with practical needs for the students, like computers, chargers and even spare BlackBerrys because I know living without one of these in the business world is like trying to get drunk on nonalcoholic beer. Additionally, the Tool Store could have Armani business suits in case students forget to dress up for presentations. The only clothing products below Armani quality allowed the in Tool Store would be designer T-shirts and matching hats for non-presentation days.

The next school that needs a symbolic store is of course the College of General Studies. Yes, the obvious joke here is that CGS actually stands for ‘Crayons, Glue and Scissors’ and that there should be a Hooked on Phonics stand located in the center of the school. But that’s too easy. Instead, the store/restaurant that would best fit in CGS would be a brand new White Castle. I lived in West Campus last year. I know that a good number of CGS students did their best Harold and Kumar impersonations in a pre-class routine that involved smoking a certain plant that caused them to become extremely hungry – among other things.

The School of Engineering needs a store inside that sells subsidized amounts of CGS’s favorite smoking plant. This new ENG store – which I would call Mary Jane’s – is not necessarily a reflection of the aspirations of its students. In actuality, it is a store that is vital to the survival of these stressed out students. Perhaps all they need is one stop in Mary Jane’s to purchase a special brownie that reduces their stress and eases their minds so they can make it through the rest of the week.

The school at BU that is undoubtedly the most populated throughout the stressful school week is the College of Arts and Sciences. Some may call this school the ‘College of Average Students’ and note that the Einstein Bros. Bagels in the basement is a good enough reflection of the students. However, I think that a college that offers majors ranging from geophysics and planetary sciences to Russian language and literature deserves a store with more variety. That is why I think a huge Costco warehouse in the basement of CAS would be the only store that could reflect the diversity of the large number of CAS majors. There would be something for everyone. The planetary science majors could get those Styrofoam balls to make planets while the Russian students could find enough meat and spices to make a traditional Russian meal.

Students, like me, in the College of Communication don’t need a store as big as Costco to reflect us. Actually, I’m just going to come out and say that the rumor is true: We really don’t do any work in COM – especially we film majors – because most classes are fun. The only work COM students ever have to do is a product of the non-COM required classes. Thus, it is only appropriate that we turn the COM Lounge into the COM Pub. Why try to hide how much fun we have inside COM? After finishing one of the three days of the week that I have classes next year, I would love to stroll into the COM Pub and have a few drinks with my classmates. The creative juices would start flowing as freely as the alcohol being drunk, and who knows what great journalistic, advertising and movie ideas would follow?

I hope this idea for my column didn’t offend anyone. If I’ve left out a school or completely insulted yours, please come see me in the COM Lounge. I’ll be working on the 2009 fall semester opening of The COM Pub.

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