It hasn't been a great week for UA students. Sure, the sports teams in session went undefeated last weekend. The new look McKale is nice. Old Main's renovated and fancy now. People are still learning things there. However, between members of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity attacking members of Jewish fraternity Alpha Epsilon Pi, 11 fraternities and sororities spending part of the year on some sort of probation and the continuing absurdity of residents of the new south-of-campus towers throwing bottles and other assorted trash at the Islamic Center of Tucson, the boorish behavior of some is possibly giving the rest of the community a bad sense of who's studying at our local university.
Surely, these events and other assorted incidents are the result of a few out of control individuals among a campus of generally well-meaning young people, but as the university itself continues to sprawl across the downtown area, extending housing miles in various directions from the main campus, there has to be a certain seriousness taken with behavior. Now, I understand that booze and parties and possibly even some drugs are part of many college students' experience and that's fine, but when that behavior continues to seep into the lives of the rest of us, then that's what gets to be troubling.
Here's my concern: In the past, the UA always had the high ground to take in arguments with Girls Gone Wild University and Casino up in Tempe. We didn't take any student with a FAFSA and a pulse, there was a reasonable expectation that a diploma from here meant something. Steve Kozachik is leading a hard charge to crack down on the Islamic Center vandalism, but the university itself needs to step up and create hard lines of what sort of standards the community can expect students to abide by. Fairly or unfairly, if behavior like what we've been seeing lately is allowed to continue, people will start to think there's two jokes of universities in our state.