Letters to the Editor

Charging all residents for damages masks problem

For the past two years, I have lived in the residence halls on campus, this past year in Kosove. This spring, a picture off the wall, two large floor rugs and a coffee table were stolen from the lobby of Kosove. Posters were put up around the hall offering a reward to anyone who came forward with information regarding the stolen items.

Nothing more was said about the subject until a few weeks later, when I looked at my account, where I noticed a $4.80 fee for “Kosove-Damages.” I was puzzled, and called the Area Coordinator to inquire, and she explained that one of the rugs was recovered, but the other was still missing, and since no one confessed, every resident in the hall was charged $4.80 to replace the missing rug.

I have two concerns with this ongoing problem of theft in the residence halls. Why should every resident be punished for something that one or more people – and quite possibly people who are not even residents in that hall – did? The picture that was stolen from the wall was bolted down but obviously not good enough. The rugs and coffee table were not affixed to the floor in any way. Why not? If these objects were not secured enough, shouldn’t there be security cameras in every hallway? This is not just a theft, but a security issue for the residence halls.

Countless people have been the victim of theft in the residence halls, and security cameras within hallways would greatly deter thieves. The question of privacy laws can be raised, but give me a break. It’s the information age, and we are constantly on camera, whether people are aware of it or not. Security cameras are in stores, in Ybor City and at the front gates of most apartment complexes. It’s just another pro for living off campus, because obviously the residence halls are not safe.

It is utterly unfair to have an entire building pay for what one or more people stole. If a computer was stolen from Cooper Hall, would everyone who works and attends class in that building be responsible for paying for it? Surely not; Cooper would just have one less computer. I say that the residence halls should spend more money on security and less on making the lobby look like something out of an IKEA ad.

Shannon Keefe is a junior majoring in psychology and criminology.

University should protect student information

The USF administration is comprised of nothing but fishmongers; debt-mongers. I thought things were bad when passive displays were all students had to worry about. But during an Office of Financial Aid event designed to help students with their FAFSA’s, three credit card distributors set up right next door. They trolled for victims with free pizza.

You know the message this sends? Students trust the university to look out for them and to have their best interests in mind. By allowing credit cards to advertise on campus (for a fee, I’m sure), the university endorses debt.

Allowing companies to set up next to financial aid gives the impression that they are just one more financial aid option. They are not.

Even the arch-conservative Tampa Tribune has come out against credit cards for college students.

And now, the epitome of greed: Genshaft and the administration have turned über-pimp, striking a deal with a VISA company, selling student addresses and enrollment information – and for what? Money we’ll never see, debt we’ll suffer for years after we realize, “That wasn’t a good idea.” I have never granted permission to the university to sell my personal information for their commercial gain.

Thanks; thanks for rescuing USF from remaining a place of education and turning it into a brothel.

Eric Eyles is a graduate student in the public archaeology program.