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Author J.K Rowling purchases UBC's Irving K. Barber Library!


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Incredible! For us UBC students, we all know that there is Harry Potter inspired room, but a student at UBC convinced JK Rowling to check it out. Once she finally caved in to do so, she loved it so much that she bought it!!

VANCOUVER (The News Desk) — The University of British Columbia announced today that the school’s main library, the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, has been acquired by prominent British novelist J.K. Rowling.

Rowling told fans in a written statement that the acquisition was inspired by letters from second-year UBC student Li-Qiu Fan, who believed that the library’s Ridington Room (known affectionately by students as the “Harry Potter Room”) was actually named after Harry Potter.

When I first heard from Li-Qiu about the library, I didn’t think much of it. I get letters from deranged fans quite often. However, she kept insisting, in letter after letter, that not only was Harry Potter real, but that this was the most breathtaking room in all of UBC and that I just had to visit. I finally caved in and visited, and fell in love with the library immediately. I was like, I have to buy this building.

As of Aug. 13, Rowling now sits as director of the library’s Advisory Committee, which this week voted in favour of a $61,000,000 CAD renovation. When asked about the renovations, previous director Simon Naeme simply chuckled and said, “We’re just really happy to add a little magic to the experience here at UBC.”

Renovations will retrofit the building to be more in line with the “spirit of Hogwarts,” a core principle of Rowling’s model for student engagement. Planned expenditures include:

  • $5,000,000 towards the addition of secondary mobile staircases, which will connect to the current staircases at odd intervals “so as to mimic the iconic staircases of Hogwarts.”

  • $300,000 towards the acquisition of digital picture frames, which will display animated photos of previous UBC presidents (“headmasters”).

  • $30,000,000 towards the construction of four new faculty (“house”) lounges for students in Science (“Ravenclaw”), Engineering (“Gryffindor”), Sauder (“Slytherin”) and Arts (“Hufflepuff”).

  • $8,000,000 towards the removal of Ike’s Café.

  • $7,000,000 towards the hiring and training of an elite team of Dementors to replace current security staff (“They weren’t very scary-looking anyway”).

  • $10,000,000 towards the construction of a “Chamber of Secrets,” for which Rowling gave no specific purpose.

The renovated and renamed Joanne K. Rowling Learning Centre is scheduled to reopen in the winter of 2017. ♦

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Oh geez. I'm so glad this is syrup trap...just left my job there.

Another fun one from them:


New fountains propel UBC past Harvard in rankings


PPFountain-300x203.pngVANCOUVER (The News Desk) — The Times Higher Education university rankings have placed the University of British Columbia second in the world, one spot above its historic rival, Harvard University.

Editors of the rankings cited UBC’s recently completed $250 million campus beautification project — in particular the construction of 12 “awesome” new fountains — as the deciding factor.

University administrators were pleased but not surprised by the result. “Tuition dollars have to be spent carefully in the current fiscal climate. Fountains were clearly the right choice here,” explained Campus Planning official Martha Bort.

Students were also unsurprised by the result. “My favourite has always been the one that spouts only pure Dom Pérignon,” said arts undergraduate Kaveh Sarhangpour as he bathed in the fountain of sparkling wine. “I’m glad our fountains are getting the recognition they deserve.”

“The fountains have added so much depth to my education here at UBC,” said graduate engineering student Jessica Bruce. “They have forced me to reconsider what a fountain is. Is it a place for bathing? A place to release your roommate’s goldfish? Or are fountains just giant urinals for inebriated people?”

But some faculty members have expressed concerns about the impact of the fountains on student learning. “People come to UBC and all they want to do is look at the fountains. Shouldn’t there be more to university than just fountains? Maybe I’m crazy,” said sociology professor Wilfred Koerner.

UBC later announced it will begin construction on a full-scale replica of Caltech, this year’s No. 1–ranked university. ♦

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