When I first stepped into the University, my instincts told me that I was entering a safe ground.
Throughout my stay at DLSU I never lost anything important inside campus. In fact, I left my shoes twice on the eighth floor of the Enrique Razon Sports Complex and came back to find that they were still there. I also forgot my book in Andrew Hall 908 for a weekend and found it the week after under the projector stand.
I have grown to trust the University as my second home, and to an extent I was and still am a comfortable that nothing could happen inside the walls of De La Salle. In the past few terms, however, incidents on theft around campus have questioned my belief.
Having said that, the incidents of theft have led me, just like many, to ask: Is the University really safe and is it just luck that keeps us safe?
Since last year, I have heard rumors about missing bags, gadgets, and other valuables at the lockers at the sports complex. At first, I couldn’t believe that theft could be as rampant at DLSU. But after more stories that have popped out on social media and eventually hearing the news straight from my friends who have had lockers at the sports complex, I can’t stop myself from believing that the school is not safe.
One particular incident convinced me of this notion. During the Lasallian Media Week (LMW), our circulations manager left his bag near the booths at the Yuchengco lobby. He returned to find out that his bag disappeared.
He started panicking because the bag containing his laptop, a hard drive and a camera, all stolen inside a supposed safe place for students.
What’s good is that he quickly composed himself and went to the Security and Safety Office (SSO) to find out that most of the CCTV cameras inside the campus are not functional or at least do not cover areas where student activities usually happen.
His case is just one of many at the SSO, and is probably one of many more cases that were never reported. The rising number of cases of theft begs the question: What is the University doing about it? Moreover, is the University doing anything at all?
The reality is that we are on an unprotected campus, at least in terms of our safety from theft. And while we can always blame the administration or the different offices at the University for our loss, the real responsibility lies with the students. Students need to take precautions because at the end of the day, they would have to bear the brunt of the loss.