Villanova student rights: a quick refresher course

Robin Heim

From our first day of freshman year until the day we graduate, we all hear rumors about what our Resident Assistants have the power to do.

Can they come in at any time, take anything and confiscate our cash? Can they take our treasured stockpiles of ice cold Natural Light whilst we cling to it, knuckles white, voices hoarse with cries of protest?

Let us clear the air. Let us rediscover some of the magical abilities RAs actually possess.

There is only one definitive source of campus law: the Blue Book. You can hold our dear alma mater to everything published within it like any other contract between parties. Know it and you will prosper. Leave it atop old copies of The Villanovan and you will be open to harassment, invasion of privacy and those other uniquely unfortunate mishaps that go hand-in-hand with ignorance of the law.

Villanova, being a private and non-state University, is not bound by all federal regulations. However, many of our guidelines run parallel to those students of state schools complained about.

For instance, RAs cannot force entry into your room without gaining permission from you or your roommate. Let this point be perfectly clear: you can deny an RA entrance to your room as well as the right to inspect any closed area (i.e., a refrigerator). No Villanovan wants his RA seeing his bottles of milk and juice.

But know that once entrance is denied, they do have the right to write you up for either failure to comply or acting suspiciously. Once in the room, they are also allowed to write you up for anything in plain sight and anything they find to be suspicious.

Do not misunderstand me, my fellow Villanovans; I do not think that RAs are “out to get you.” They are people just like you and me; they are our fellow scholars on this beautiful campus. One such person is my friend Jennifer Kusner.

“It’s definitely rewarding because I get to meet 44 new girls and help them get adjusted to college life,” Kusner says of life as an RA.

So use them as resources and counselors for any questions about that fantastic period in our time on Earth known as college life.

Just don’t be stupid, and you won’t get caught. Follow the rules, and you won’t have anything about which to worry. Understand I am not condoning lawlessness and disregard for the rules. We need the law; it is what keeps society civilized.

But if you do decide to go “hog wild” and break the rules of conduct of our University, be smart and know your rights. In short, dear readers, read the Blue Book and life will flow as smoothly as that freshly opened, ice-cold can of Pepsi.