SMU billboard in Sydney causes controversy

October 8, 2014

A Sydney billboard advertising Saint Mary’s University has raised the ire of some members of the Cape Breton University community. The sign says, “the right future is worth the drive to Halifax,” a message that some say is a clear slight against CBU. “It’s kind of talking down on CBU. I feel like it’s saying that Saint Mary’s is better,” said one CBU student. SMU says that no offence was intended. Margaret Murphy, AVP External Affairs at SMU, said, “research shows that being in Halifax is attractive to young people … location is one of the features that we’re pushing in the billboards.” CBU President David Wheeler isn’t annoyed; rather, he described the billboard as “kind of funny.” Wheeler said that the advertisement is par for the course as PSE institutions aggressively compete with one another for domestic students. “We’re confident in our abilities,” he said. “We have the highest satisfaction rate in the province.” CBU’s Director of Marketing Stacey Black said there are no plans for a direct rebuttal. CTV | ChronicleHerald