Editorial: Protect your property

After a wave of on-campus thefts, students should safeguard their belongings.

When students sign up for on-campus housing, safety is undoubtedly one of their top priorities. Being greeted by a guard upon arriving home and needing an ID to access the building contribute to a feeling of security. However, how much of that security is false in regard to personal property?

According to the Crime and Safety Report released last Monday, on-campus burglaries went up from four in 2011 to 27 in 2012. Sixteen of those 27 incidents were in residence halls.

Acting Executive Director of Public Safety Charlie Leone said a majority of the increase in burglaries were due to a three-week spree in the 1300 residence hall last summer. A now-former employee gained access to unattended rooms while the hall was being used by outside conference guests, Leone said.

Although most of the jump can be tied to this incident, the vast increase still leaves some incidents in question. Students are attracted to – and pay handsomely for – the allure of heightened safety in on-campus housing. A student paying $550 a month for an off-campus apartment still pays thousands of dollars less than they would to live on-campus for a year.

While off-campus housing often gets a bad rap for burglary incidents, students living in on-campus housing should take personal initiative to protect their own property. Laptop locks, safes and other security measures are worthy investments whether one lives on or off campus.

Campus Safety Services should be applauded for recognizing and putting a stop to the problem last summer. However unusual the incident may have been, students living on-campus should still take greater ownership over protecting personal property.

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