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Homecoming weekend leads to concerns over off-campus living

During Homecoming weekend, several Saint Vincent students who live off-campus report that they received an email from the Office of Student Affairs, warning them to take precaution for that weekend.

One off-campus residency on Spring Street in Latrobe received an email specific to their residency. The email stated that since it was Homecoming Weekend, their house may “attract alumni and problems associated.”

Last March, over a dozen students were cited at an off-campus party on Spring Street.

Some senior students have noticed a pattern of increased supervision of off-campus activities since their freshman year, including one anonymous senior.

“Compared to previous years, the punishments seem to be harsher and the school has been involving itself in minor incidents that didn’t result in anything serious," the student said.

Robert Baum, dean of students, addressed the alleged pattern of increased supervision.

“If and when circumstances arise that require Saint Vincent to provide enhanced support and engagement, that is done without regard to residency on or off campus,” Baum said.

Page 11 in the Saint Vincent College Student Handbook states that “a person is considered a student from the day of his or her paid deposit upon admission until one year after commencement (including any breaks in enrollment of one year or less).”

The Handbook also mentions that commuters are responsible for providing both a permanent and local mailing address and telephone number to the Office of Student Affairs each year.

“Our students’ education is the most important aspect of being a Bearcat and that education is not bound by any one geographic location,” Baum said.

Some students believe that certain off-campus residencies are targeted more than others and that Student Affairs discourages off-campus living altogether.

The anonymous off-campus resident holds the latter opinion.

“They’d rather keep people on campus so they can keep a closer eye on students and they try to intimidate off-campus students into not hosting anything,” the student said.

Baum addressed this concern.

“When we are made aware of concerns at off-campus houses, we follow up with them in a man

ner tailored to their specific situation,” Baum said.

He added that Student Affairs tries to “encourage Saint Vincent students to recognize and enjoy their membership in the local community during their time in college.”

The Student Handbook addresses off-campus conduct as well.

“Students are members and representatives of Saint Vincent College […],” the Handbook asserts. “All students are held accountable for their behavior, both on and off campus.”

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