The city of Philadelphia is home to several diverse universities. With so many in such close proximity, it is not surprising that there is a great deal of interaction between students from different campuses.
But what is surprising is the frequency with which students from other local universities are approached by Campus Safety Services in conjunction with alcohol-related incidents. As Ali Watkins reports on Page 1, CSS estimates about one-third of incidents involve students from another campus.
This raises several issues, most notably the application of codes of conduct depending on location.
The Temple News applauds Philadelphia universities for communicating so effectively on such matters. But the universities should be doing a better job in communicating with the students. The fact that Temple can discipline students even if they’re outside of the 500-yard jurisdiction of the Student Code of Conduct is an important, but underpublicized fact.
Additionally, fellow local universities should work together to devise some sort of consolidated rule base.
One such example is Temple’s amnesty program. This policy, which prevents severe disciplinary action against Temple students seeking medical assistance for anything drug- or alcohol-related as long as they go through an educational course, makes no mention of non-Temple students.
The amnesty program should be updated and adopted by all Philadelphia universities so that all students are encouraged to seek medical help instead of risking their lives. The logo on a student ID should not cross a student’s mind when thinking about calling for help.
All of that said, The Temple News also believes that students bear a considerable responsibility when inviting friends from another university to campus.
In such scenarios, Temple students are acting as university ambassadors. They have an obligation to watch their guests and ensure safety. Failure to do so reflects a negative image of Temple to the visiting students and to the community.
The Temple News stands by CSS for keeping its communication channels open with other local universities, but encourages it to try and adopt a broader amnesty program. Additionally, students must recognize that they are accountable for the actions of their guests as well as themselves.