As the majority of students at the University of Birmingham have heard, Edward Bauer, Vice President of Education, has been arrested and withheld from release. During the Liberal Democrat conference in Birmingham on Friday, he put up a banner reading ‘Traitors Not Welcome – Hate Clegg Love NCAFC ‘(National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts) on the bridge connecting the International Convention Centre and the Hyatt Hotel on Broad Street. It is alleged that this caused debris to fall into the road below, posing a danger to cars and pedestrians directly underneath.
This story has caused a fair amount of uproar amongst the student body, with many supporting Bauer and his regular campaigns against student fees. As the Vice President of Education, it is certainly within his job description to care about the effects these are having on students and no one could accuse him of neglecting this duty.
But his greatest duty is surely to the Guild of Students and the electorate that gave him this role in the first place. Working for the university means that he no longer solely represents himself, but also the institution and the vast student body here. To have such a representative face arrest for the second time in six months – for whatever reason – cannot be a positive thing for anyone involved. Bauer’s passion is admirable, but he is intelligent enough to know that getting into such serious trouble when you are the ambassador of a university is ill advised and damages the confidence some initially had in his ability to take the role of Vice President of Education. Continue reading