When Coke Floods Student Body, Problems Arise

I am writing in response to last week’s article on the contract that UVM, or rather, that the UVM administration signed with Coca-Cola. Factually, the article was adequate as it identified the stipulations of the contract.

Yet there was a very basic aspect of the article missing: the “other side of the story.” If I may, I would like to offer this other perspective that I have developed with the help of students and faculty with whom I have spoken.

First of all, this deal has created a verifiable monopoly on the beverages people can buy on the UVM campus. As if a school creating a monopoly is not bad enough, the decision was made without consulting the Student Government

Association, the Faculty Senate or the Staff Council. Therefore, this deal was made by the money-hungry administration alone.

Had the administration asked for the opinions of students or faculty, perhaps they would have been made aware of the human rights issues associated with the Coca-Cola corporation. For example, I wonder whether, prior to signing the contract, the administration was aware of the fact that Coca-Cola has subsidiaries in Columbia and elsewhere that use death squads against workers involved in union activities.

Maybe even with this knowledge the contract would have been signed, but maybe not.

Overall, I am a concerned student who is outraged at the lack of diplomacy demonstrated by the administration and the lack of insight that the Vermont Cynic was able to offer on the issue.