Is the fake ID a must-have at ‘Nova?

Raynor Denitzio

It’s the question you ask the tour guide from Blue Key when your parents are busy admiring the gothic architecture, but it’s pretty important.

What’s the social life like?

According to the Princeton review the answer is “not too good” for Villanova. On its website, the Princeton review offers college student’s opinions on a variety of issues ranging from academics and student population to the campus social scene. Some student responses were pretty negative to life at Villanova. One poster on the site stated that they felt that “the rules are too strict, but they can still head to The Brick Bar, which is pretty popular when the beer is cheap.”

This points to Villanova’s growing reputation as a bar school, where students go out to find a good time. As such, some students are turning to fake IDs.”I go to bars because it’s a more fun environment,” commented one student. “I guess I realize the risk, and as long as I don’t get in trouble it will be fine.”

While it’s debatable that having a fake ID means access to more fun, one thing is certain: the consequences of getting caught using one are serious.

“I got it through a friend of a friend for $50,” said an anonymous freshman. “I got it junior year in high school, and there were at least 50 juniors and seniors that had one. Having one enables you to do a lot more things.”

The possible legal problems of using a fake ID did give this student some pause. “I’m really careful with it; I think twice sometimes,” he said. “If I see a long line or a bouncer in front it’ll turn me away from the place.” The dangers of using a fake ID are many. It is illegal in Pennsylvania for anyone to possess any form of fake or altered form of identification. Penalties for infractions include fines, loss of driving privileges and the possibility of jail time. The University can also take action for violations of the law occurring off campus. This risk was enough to deter some students. Freshman Adam Abruzzese said, “The risk of having a fake ID is too high. To get a good one that works, it’s not worth losing my driver’s license.”

Fake IDs can run anywhere from $40 and up, some costing more than $150. The possibility of having your ID taken away and a fine on top of that make fake IDs possibly a very expensive proposition.

The use of fake IDs is a liability for beer and liquor stores as well. Steve Chun, an employee at Newtown Square Beverage said, “We do constantly see fake IDs, not usually on weekdays, but we do see around one or two a day on weekends.”

Beer and liquor stores make efforts to curb the use of fake IDs whenever they can. “It’s a constant battle,” Chun said. “We try not to serve them, first of all, and try to take the fake IDs away so that they don’t go out and use them at another place, and get busted for them there.”

John Michalski, an employee at Rosemont Beverage, expressed similar concerns. “We have a machine called Legal Age that scans the IDs and picks up the fake ones and the ones that are doctored, the ones you wouldn’t pick up by just looking at them.”

Michalski said the machine has helped to curb the use of fake IDs at the store. “This machine has been very effective.”

Despite what the posters on the Princeton review web site may say, most students are happy with the social scene at Villanova. “I don’t need a fake ID,” said freshman Matt Purtill. “If I want to have a good time, I can always find a party at one of my friends’ places. An ID will not make or break my experience at Villanova.”