Has Ferris slipped back into party school rating?

Students question the motives of Department of Public Safety

Most students note the strong connection between parties and alcohol in college years.

Over the past several years, some believe Ferris may be getting back its “party school” reputation. In the past, Ferris was known for big parties, some of which lead to unfortunate consequences.

In an article from the April 5, 2000 issue of the Torch, it was reported that Ferris students Steve Petz and Adrian Allan died due to incidents involving alcohol.

In the previous three editions of the Torch, there have been a total of 16 MIP reports. Since Aug. 29, there have been around 52 arrests.

MIPs can be issued both on campus and off campus. If caught drinking in a residence hall, the resident advisor or hall director may choose to keep the issue within the confines of the campus or they may choose to involve law enforcement officials beyond campus.

The standard result of a first time offense handled through the school is a mandatory online course about alcohol that comes with a fee of $100.

“Drinking underage is a common theme when students are away from home, making decisions on their own control with the lack of parental guidance,” Captain James Cook from Ferris Department of Public Safety, said.

Former dance clubs such as The Odyssey along with River Rock have had issues with Ferris students drinking underage.

Ferris student Tara Dykehouse said she feels it is unsafe not to walk home after drinking.

“I think DPS is trying way too hard,” Dykehouse said. “If we are being responsible enough not to drive, they shouldn’t be so hard on us. It’s not like we’re hurting anyone by walking home,” Dykehouse said.

Ferris junior Ryan Busscher said drinking is cheaper than other forms of entertainment.

“I’ve noticed, especially in college, that it’s cheaper to drink than to go to a movie, especially if you go to a fraternity party or a bar with all the specials,” Busscher said.

Although some Ferris students may consider Ferris as having a “party school” reputation, Cook said he feels students can portray the image of Ferris any way they choose to through their actions.

Ferris has around 10,000 students compared to Central Michigan University, which has around 21,000 students. Cook said the drinking per capita is about the same.

“The reality is young adults drink on campus,” Cook said.

Cook said there is always going to be an issue with underage drinking throughout all universities.

He said whether a student is operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated or walking home – both are dangerous. Cook said a student could get in a car accident while behind the wheel, as well as stumble out in the road and get hit by a car.

“We as police officers are worried about everyone,” Cook said.