The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Turner responds to task force report

On June 11, 2007, President Turner commissioned a Task Force on Substance Abuse Prevention, and on April 15 the recommendations were given to President Turner, and now those recommendations have been acted on.

In a press release President Turner stated, “It is our hope, however, that the many recommendations we will implement will strengthen a culture of personal responsibility and academic achievement,” after saying that no one recommendation would help solve the problem.

Of over 30 recommendations, only two were outright rejected by President Turner. They both fell under the purview of students being allowed to drink on campus.

The recommendation to “permit organizations to sponsor parties and to serve beer on campus to those of drinking age” was not accepted by President Turner. Neither was the recommendation to have a pub on campus. President Turner said this was because the majority of people living on campus are underage students, and the people of age to drink would still have to drive to off-campus residences.

The other recommendations that directly affected drinking on campus were eliminating the passive-participation policy and establishing Good Samaritan and medical amnesty policies.

President Turner accepted the recommendation to eliminate passive participation on campus. That means that a person can no longer be cited for drinking just because they were in the room with people drinking, even if they were not drinking.

But the Good Samaritan and medical amnesty policies were only partially accepted.

While the student would not get in trouble with the SMU administration, they could still get a citation from the police for underage drinking.

One of the complaints from students in the past has been that the Health Center is not open on weekends. President Turner changed that when he accepted the recommendation to expand the Health Center’s hours. Now the Health Center will remain open until 3 a.m. Thursday through Saturday.

President Turner accepted each of the six academic recommendations.

That means a mandatory attendance policy, increased classes on Friday, limiting the number of courses a student can drop, revising curricula to ensure that for every hour spent in class two hours are spent on work outside of class, providing midterm reports to students in their first two years of school and giving a comprehensive final exam for all lower-division courses.

Lighting will be increased on campus to make it a safer place, and more late-night, on-campus activities during the week and on weekends will be added. This will hopefully discourage people from always going out to party on the weekends, according to the report.

President Turner also accepted the recommendation to encourage Greek organizations to hold only off-campus “bus parties” on the weekends and not on school days, as well as making “all events associated with recruitment into Greek organizations alcohol-free, including off-campus events on weekends.”

President Turner will address these as well as the rest of his decisions today at 2 p.m. in the Hughes-Trigg Theater.

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