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Steve Nicoll



If you think being a university student makes you special then you are right. This place shapes and ejects the people who will one day transform New Zealand. Look around today and you’ll see a pack of insecure wannabes, but in years to come they’ll be wearing suits and wowing the rest of us with their ideas. Your position as a student is a privileged one – most others won’t get the chance to encounter the ideas taught here. Some of those ideas will become mantles that burn into your soul.
At Victoria University you’ll face one of the most important decisions of your life; whether to conform to the world or challenge it. Most of you will settle for the safer first option and you’ll become socialised. You’ll view Victoria as a career move, and when the gap between the rich and the poor increases, you’ll keep adding the digits, turning the wheels and drinking the cocktails.
When I was studying at Vic I did exactly that (I drank beer instead of cocktails though). I started with a law degree because lawyers were the guys the world admired. While studying I discovered that university was more like a long race than a career move. Like all joggers I learnt that it didn’t matter how I started but how I ended.
If you are new to this place then your race is about to begin. You might go on to break records. Alternatively, you might bail out. Whatever you do, make goddamn sure you drink before you run. Drink now because you won’t get the chance later. Drink to loud music (like So So Modern and Nga Tama Kino) and enjoy being a student. Student life is socially-validated slumming – be sure to abuse this.
In this, the first edition of Salient, we have tried to cater for the new student- the first-year. This edition is dedicated to their time at Vic and we hope they live it to excess. Salient contributors Laura McQuillan, Nick Archer, Steven Gilligan, Flukeman, Dave Thomson, Grant Buist, Nicola Kean, Tom Baragwanath, Rob Addison, Eleanor Bishop and Stacey Knott have journeyed into art venues, theatres, bars and the minds of celebrities to bring you a guide to Wellington, what’s on at this year’s orientation and essential information for first years. Some of the writers had to get drunk to dig out their stories. I’m thankful for their time and effort. If reading this Orientation rag encourages you to go and see something you otherwise wouldn’t have then we’ve done our job. Break on through to the other side.
PS- Salient needs rebel writers who are tired of the clichés of the mainstream media and who want to construct copy which is intelligent and critical. We welcome clever thinkers and original ideas. If you want to make a difference come and talk to the Salient team (2nd floor, Student Union Building).