Several uninvited visitors reported in Reimert Courtyard

Photograph courtesy of Grizzly Staff

Ana DerSimonian

andersimonian@ursinus.edu

During the Sept. 27 Student Senate meeting, Student  Government Vice President, Chris Tan, announced that several non-students were on campus during the weekend of Sept. 22-23. Tan described the alleged visitors as “high school students” and others with dubious backgrounds. Campus Safety was alerted on the night of the incident and resolved the situation.

Two days after his announcement, Vicky Nucci, the Graduate Assistant for Wellness, Prevention, and Advocacy, sent an email to all students informing them of  the unregistered visitors that had come into the Reimert courtyard.

In the wake of such events, Tan and Nucci have encouraged students and other members of the community to contact Campus Safety and report if anything looks out of place, whether it’s an unfamiliar person or something out of the ordinary.

Additionally, John Bera, the Director of Campus Safety, said, “The Ursinus community is small, and we encourage the students to have a great relationship with campus officers.  Officers can recognize who belongs to the school and typically can spot the ones who are unfamiliar to the area.”

The Ursinus campus is private property, so if a person is not registered and is deemed to have no business on the campus, they will be asked to leave by the campus officers.  If they choose to refuse, the Collegeville police will be contacted. This is not to say, however, that students cannot invite their friends to campus. As per college policy, students can invite up to five friends to campus at one time. Guests must be registered through the Campus Safety office and they may be asked to leave if they are causing a disturbance.  The link for guest registration can be found at https://www.ursinus.edu/offices/campus-safety/.

In order to address the situation, Campus Safety’s patrol presence has increased not only on weekend nights but also on regular weeknights.  They are there to ensure more safety to the school and hope that students will become more willing to approach them.

Bera said, “[Campus Safety officers] want students to feel comfortable enough to voice their concerns regarding anything, and do not want to be seen as intrusive.”

Campus Safety does their best to determine who the strangers are and where they are from.  If someone is assumed to be trespassing, they will be sent an email saying they are banned from the school’s grounds, and if they do return they will be arrested.

Nucci notes that social media can be a contributor to having unexpected visitors on campus and that students should be cognizant of privacy settings.  Unknown people could potentially see information that is published on Snapchat, Instagram, and other forms of social media.  These unregistered individuals could show up to campus claiming to have a relationship with the student who posted on their social media accounts. Students will be contacted if strangers claim to know them.

Nucci is more than willing to sit down with anyone and go over their digital identity and security settings for their social media accounts.

Although this incident took place at Reimert, unexpected strangers can be found all over campus, and are not isolated in just one location. If anything seems troubling, Campus Safety hopes students won’t hesitate to come to them, no matter the severity of the situation.