Student protesters at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn., during a speech by Charleton Heston a week ago laid out 178 pairs of shoes to represent the number of Minnesotans killed by gun violence in 1999.
This example shows how student activism plays a large role on some college campuses. Temple University is an exception.
It is common to hear students complain that their university does not provide enough housing, financial aid, or variety of classes for students. Yet at Temple, students allow these problems to continue when they do not address campus-related issues and make their opinion known to the public.
True, Temple is largely a commuter campus, where many students don’t spend enough time on campus even to be aware of problems, let alone to care about them.
True, many Temple students divide their time outside class among one or more jobs to cover the cost of tuition, books, and school supplies. With school, work and home lives to attend to, Temple students have grown detached from university issues.
These conditions should not be an excuse for justifying the apathy that reigns on campus.
Consider these examples from last year:
The lack of sufficient housing incited a group protest, which forced the university to provide students more off-campus housing options and viable transportation solution.
When university officials threatened to remove the African-American Studies program from the curriculum, numerous petitions circulated and the program was preserved.
These incidents show the power of activism. When Temple students take initiative in addressing issues that affect them, the results are positive for the whole.
Even students who spend only a quarter of their day on a college campus have a duty to make themselves aware of the issues that concern their school, campus and community.