When the Campus Climate report was released, the school took several measures to limit binge drinking and have more students become involved in campus. However, from what I have noticed over the past two years is that this report has created an even larger void between the student community and the administration. Yet, before we get into the specifics of this occurrence, we must look at the actual issues that the report does address. I think everyone would agree that the binge drinking at Bucknell has become a problem and as a result the report does a good job of laying out the amount of binge drinking that occurs here as opposed to other schools. In addition, I was also not surprised that the greatest number of students that felt alienated from campus were a part of the black community. These are two issues that most certainly need to be addressed. However, with the positives of the report also come several negatives. It appears that the number of students interviewed for the campus climate report was extremely minimal which is something I have a HUGE problem with. In addition, the report appears to emphasize only the negatives of the social scene on campus. Hence, the report seems to not realize that being a Greek oriented community is actually not that bad. Every school’s social scene is defined differently, and it just so happens that our school’s is defined as being Greek.

As you can probably tell from the above paragraph I have a HUGE problem with the campus climate report. However, this stance is not to be taken just because I am in a fraternity. One of the reasons why I despise this report is because it has made the situation on campus worse. Rather than bringing the community closer together, this report has further alienated the student body from the administration. As Lukas’s post title showed, one example of this strained relationship occurred this weekend when a certain fraternity hired an airplane to fly around the school with a sign mocking Kevin Foster, who is in charge of fraternity affairs at Bucknell. Aside from this example, there are almost daily/weekly discussions that I have overheard or been a part of with other sorority or fraternity members who completely disagree with the school’s stance. However, a more severe consequence of the campus climate report is the increase in the downtown party scene. In order to get away from Public Safety and the eye of the administration, fraternities, including mine, are mainly hosting parties downtown to avoid the hassle that comes with having parties uphill. Yet, at the same time, the parties that are occurring downtown contain more variants of alcohol and have a greater potential for high school students to show up at parties which is unfortunately something I have witnessed. The liabilities for students living downtown hosting these parties are great when these things are occurring. Thus, the school needs to reexamine how it can effectively bring the community together in a safe and engaging manner.

5 responses »

  1. Charles says:

    I think you make a crucial point, which that there was a minimal amount of students interviewed. But you do acknowledge that binge drinking is a problem on our campus (my opinion)particularly on students under the age of 21. You say the administration is not bringing themselves closer to students but estranging themselves further from students with this report. Furthermore you seem to hint that it is the administration job to stop this “binge drinking”. However, what responsibility do we leave for ourselves? Or on fraternities? Aren’t we adults capable of drinking and partying responsibly?

  2. Lindsey F. says:

    I agree with your point about how the administration is distancing themselves from the students and the severe risks that downtown parties face. But how do we fix this? Should the administration establish more rules about the parameters of parties at fraternity houses to allow for more frequent parties? Wouldn’t that distance the relationship even more? It’s a tough situation that I think will take longer to figure out than most people expect.

  3. Matt says:

    I think it’s actually a pretty simple solution. Bucknell can’t wrap its head around the concept that the more you push, the more we push back. The best way to combat short-term binge drinking is to open up for long-term casual drinking. If we could host BBQ’s on a random Tuesday night with beers in our backyard without worrying about getting an unregistered party violation (because apparently I don’t have the right to do anything in my own house without the school’s permission) or for serving minors, we wouldn’t go as hard. Instead, we’re forced to rip shots in our rooms right before going to a register that gets shut down promptly at 2 AM. Less regulation = greater respect, but at the moment we live in an environment where we can’t trust those who are supposed to protect us.

    • Jordi says:

      I’m not really arguing with the specifics of party registration and property ownership. I just keep seeing comments like this and it seems to me you are saying “Bucknell should turn a blind eye to underage drinking (sure, in a casual setting with a BBQ).”

      How can a university with legal liabilities formalize any such policy?

  4. Jordi says:

    The first recommendation of the report was to make students the catalyst of change. Seems to me that is what you are arguing would have been better, Wes, in terms of more unity.

    I can’t say why it did or didn’t happen, but I think the intention was there.

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