While crime at Castleton State College is seldom a big problem, and 2010 was no different, Public Safety officials are a little concerned about this past year’s rise in drinking violations.
In 2009 there were a total of 117 alcohol violations listed in the annual Campus Safety and Crime Report. In the 2010 report, released last month, the total number of alcohol violations rose to 154 — a 31 percent increase.
“The only alarming thing I found was the increase in alcohol violations by 40 students,” said Bob Godlewski, Public Safety director.
But Eileen Coyne, a junior, wasn’t at all surprised by the results.
“The campus is growing so I would expect the numbers of alcohol violations to rise a little bit too. Really, I think we should be thankful that our stats are low. We just have to make sure they continue to stay low,” she said.
While alcohol violations increased significantly, the report shows that drug violations on campus dropped, from 53 in 2009 to 48 in 2010. Although burglaries on campus more than doubled from nine to 25, Godlewski said the numbers are believed to be flawed. He said one student was believed to be behind a large majority of the burglaries that happened on campus. He was later arrested in his hometown for stealing and the student no longer attends Castleton, Godlewski said.
Regarding the drinking violations, Godlewski said the majority of violations that occur on campus regarding alcohol are usually one-time offenders.
“A student will drink too much, cause trouble, and as a result Public Safety is notified to make sure first and foremost that no one is in danger and then take further measures if need be. Less than 3 percent of the students with a violation get another violation,” Godlewski said.
Mat Roulier, a senior, believes that a lot of the violations are due to lack of experience.
“I think the biggest problem is kids just don’t know their limits when it comes to drinking; especially freshmen. Trouble happens when you drink more than you can handle,” he said.
Castleton offers services for students to help build their knowledge on the dangers of alcohol abuse including counseling, clubs and of course the resources that public safety offers.
“My door is always open. If any students have problems, feel free to come and talk to us. We’re not out to get the students in trouble. Our job is to make sure everyone is safe. We don’t go out looking for trouble, trouble finds us,” Godlewski said.