Last night 60 Minutes aired damning allegations against the elite St Mark’s residential college which houses students from the University of Adelaide and other South Australian universities.
The segment included footage of a naked male student giving a grinding lap dance to a person alleged to be a member of staff; multiple allegations of sexual assault; and claims of serious hazing, including revelations that in February, first year female students were taken on a ‘sex tour’ of the college before being required to strip in front of drunk, older male students.
Earlier this year, New Matilda gained a copy of the 2013 Orientation Manual for St Mark’s College which included poems such as:
“Have you ever choked on 10 inches of rod?
Just one of the reasons why this man is God
A [sporting]legend, you fresher girls quiver
As he rams his hard dick up into your liver
And while you lie yelping and bleeding in pain
You find yourself shouting and screaming his name.”
And then this:
“The beast from the river makes Lochness look tame
He puts girls in wheelchairs without knowing their name
Your axe-wounds will grow and flow like the Nile
His conquests he nails and throws in a pile
Fresher boys stop and pay homage to this demon
He makes you look like unwanted sprays of semen.”
Predictably, the college has gone into damage control. Last night the website was temporarily pulled down but not before a statement was issued on Facebook which said: “The College is shocked and appalled by the allegations and strongly urges the former students to immediately report their allegations to the South Australian police… St Mark’s is committed to the safety, welfare and wellbeing of residents, visitors and staff and adopts a zero tolerance approach to inappropriate behaviour.”
But student groups are calling bullshit on corporate spin. End Rape On Campus has produced a helpful ‘College Bingo – Rape and Hazing edition’ so that viewers and readers can play along at home, as the usual excuses are rolled out to explain away the behaviour.
Mark Pace, who is a former University of Adelaide student, and the current President of the National Unions of Students said: “It’s hard to believe the college is genuinely ‘shocked and appalled’ by the allegations aired last night. We know that this has happened at St Mark’s in the past and that this has been an ongoing issue for many years.
“Students are contacting the media directly because they don’t think there is any meaningful action being taken by colleges or universities.”
Donate To New Matilda
New Matilda is a small, independent media outlet. We survive through reader contributions, and never losing a lawsuit. If you got something from this article, giving something back helps us to continue speaking truth to power. Every little bit counts.