Prior to the start of Homecoming weekend, students were issued an email from President Theobald urging them to behave in areas off campus. This was a letter that some students chose to ignore.
Homecoming weekend brought a marked increase in the number of alcohol citations compared to other weekends this year. Parties were held all around the Temple area.
Executive Director of Campus Safety Services Charlie Leone said there was a student party held in the 2200 block of Broad Street.
“It was over 1,000 people, definitely over 1,000 or somewhere around there,” he said.
Leone said the bash was titled the “official” Homecoming party and students came in on school buses from other universities to attend. The party was shut down about an hour after it began.
“There was people everywhere – [Temple Police], Philadelphia police – Liquor Control Enforcement was involved,” Leone said with exasperation. “We ended up shutting southbound Broad Street traffic for almost an hour while we were trying to get the crowd to disperse.”
Other large pockets of parties, Leone said, were on 17th and 18th streets. These are streets that he described as a “big challenge.”
“At one point it was like one in the morning and I was coming up 18th Street and on 18th and Arlington – I don’t know how many students, but they had the whole street blocked and they were just blasting music and dancing in the streets,” Leone said.
Senior media studies and production major Andrew Sandefur said he was unsurprised to hear of the parties, citing Homecoming as an excuse for students to go crazy.
“Students might just be trying to prove a point, which is that Temple can throw a giant rager,” he said.
University students seem to have proven this point to surrounding schools, as it has become apparent to Leone that more non-Temple students are utilizing the university as a place to party.
“We seem to get an average of 45 to 50 percent of those intoxicated to be not from Temple,” Leone said. “Last year we were about 35 percent, so the numbers have been increasing.”
During Homecoming weekend there were 28 alcohol related citations issued, but only eight were to Temple students.
Senior strategic communications major Chanel Ross said she believes that since Temple students are so close to the city, they have other options than drinking for weekend entertainment. Although others may view the university as a party school, she added that Temple does have more to offer.
“Temple does house kids from other schools to come to our parties,” Ross said. “However, as Temple students we have more of a choice than isolated schools known for a party culture.”
Though Homecoming weekend may have been all smiles for some, for others it brought more stress.
“One student ended up getting part of their teeth knocked out,” Leone said. “I think they may have been implants or something like that but nonetheless and then another student got a gash by his eye.”
The two students described by Leone were involved in two separate assaults in the off-campus areas. He believes that alcohol was likely involved.
“That’s the kind of stuff that just, you know, that and sexual assault worries the hell out of me,” Leone said.
Some local residents in the area were also less than pleased with the results of the Homecoming weekend. Leone said he received a “few phone calls.”
“It just makes for a difficult time for people to live together,” he said.
Sandefur agrees that student parties must be upsetting for the neighbors, but explained that the level of annoyance varies depending on where you live.
“The higher the concentration of students on a given block, the more crazy that block is on a Friday or Saturday night,” Sandefur said.
While Leone admitted he is unsure if student-neighbor relations are actually getting worse, he said the fact neighbors are still complaining at a steady rate is an issue in itself.
Cindy Stansbury can be reached at email@example.com