By Paige Walker
In 2015, there were 619 on campus residential liquor law violations, according to the Western Michigan University Department of Public Safety annual crime report,
With 91 percent of first-year students at WMU staying in residence halls, underage students are responsible for most of the drinking.
“Freshman are the most to get caught, especially since it’s a majority freshman dorm,” said Krysta Cullins, a 19- year-old junior at WMU and a current Resident Assistant in Valley Two. The resident assistants of each resident hall are trained to look for signs of students who are drinking in their rooms.
“We listen for loud music playing and glasses clinking, yelling of the words shots shots shots,” Cullins said. “It’s not like we’re looking to find trouble, but they are very obvious with the way they drink.”
When caught drinking, minors get more than just a slap on the wrist; the RAs turn it into a learning experience.
Stephanie Liakos is a 20-year-old film, video and media studies major, who was willing to share her experience. “It happened in Siedschlag Hall and they were very understanding about it, but still firm about the consequences,” said Liakos. “They searched the room for alcohol, and made us pour out any that we had in the room.”
When asked about her punishment, Liakos considered it to be a learning experience. “We had to write a letter home saying we were caught drinking underage in a residence hall, and we had to take a one-day class about safe drinking,” Liakos said. “The class wasn’t bad, but it cost us money, and that was the real punishment.”