In the middle of J-Term, Campus Safety sent out an email regarding three incidents where individuals outside of the campus gained access to university buildings.
If you missed this email, there’s a good reason—it probably never reached your inbox. Many students did not receive this email due to a glitch, which was discovered upon the investigation of this story, according to Campus Safety head Rick Tupper.
Tupper said he contacted the IT department right away. The department looked into the issue immediately and discovered a coding glitch had appeared when students’ emails were transferred over in the system from the fall semester to interim.
“When I send a message out, I send it to ‘all students,’ and something that got coded in the transition removed some of you as students,” Tupper said. “They were able to go in right away and find out what the issue was and then they did their magic and fixed it.”
On not being aware of the glitch, Tupper added, “I appreciate people letting us know because otherwise we would not have known that there was an issue.”
The email touched on three incidents: two twelve-year-old area boys who vandalized rooms in the Humanities, a female student finding her dorm door being vandalized—most likely by an ex-boyfriend—and a female student who woke up at 1 a.m. to find a masked man and other males in the room.
Sophomore Annemarie Fischer received the email after a student who first received it from a professor forwarded it to her.
“I was really freaked out, because I really did not think that would happen at Augie,” she said. “My first reaction was to send it to my roommate, Kelly, because she was here by herself.”
Fischer seemed most jostled by the story of the female student waking up with masked men in her dorm room.
“We only lock our door at night when we were sleeping,” she said. “I don’t really know Kelly’s schedule so we just kind of leave it open. Now we lock it when we leave.”
Freshman Amber Elliot was the student woken up by masked men in her room. She was sleeping on her futon and someone grabbed her shoulder. She looked up into the face of a man wearing a mask. The men all laughed and ran out of the room.
The men ended up being Elliot’s friends.
“It was just a scary thing,” she said.
She did not know their identities during the incident.
“That was the scary part,” Elliot said. “If I would have known who it was, I would have just talked to them and been like, ‘That’s not cool.’”
Tupper assured that if the situation had not have resolved quickly, he would have sent out a follow-up email to the campus community.
He said Campus Safety relies heavily on students sharing information with each other. Because there was no way for him to tell who did or did not receive the email, it would have to be sent out to everyone again.
Another challenge Campus Safety faces is students not actually reading the messages it sends out.
“If I send out too many emails people are going to go, ‘Oh, just another one from him again, I don’t need to see that,’ but then that’s where you have the lapses where people do not get good information,” Tupper said. “I’m pretty intentional about when I send something out, it’s something you’re going to want to know.”