When I arrived in State College three months ago, I was filled with excitement to be studying at Penn State. I knew I would be in for a culture shock. But I never expected a shock this big.
For months leading up to my arrival I was very aware of our standing as the No. 1 party school in the country — not something I am proud of. It is disgraceful to see highly intoxicated students on a Friday or Saturday night stumbling down the street or even, in some cases, falling down on sidewalks. Intoxicated female students are often walking by themselves late at night. One student I recall even jumped out in front of cars while drunk. He can consider himself lucky that he got arrested rather than killed.
The nuisance gathering ordinance is not the way to solve the problem. Although I have sympathy for residents who have had their property vandalized, the ordinance debate just prolongs solving the problem. God forbid the ACLU gets involved even further. It is just a small number of students exhibiting this behavior. It has to stop. As guests of this town, it is our responsibility to be aware of our surroundings and to respect other people's property as though it was our own.
We are Penn State. What one Penn State student does will affect all of us. And for those of my peers who are tired of the bad rap they feel they get from residents or council members, it is time to apply the pressure. It is time to take responsibility and hold our fellow students accountable for their actions.
We have already lost one of our fellow students; let's not go for two.
Steven Iacovino Norristown
The writer is a freshman journalism student.