The fourth wall : a Penn State Mont Alto student periodical. (Mont Alto, PA) 2004-????, September 01, 2004, Image 1

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    Fall 2004
Danielle Ramsay
After evaluating this
campus’s crime rate and
meeting with students, the
Campus Policy and Planning
Advisory Committee has
suggested that the Mont Alto
campus police officers be
armed. Upon approval from
Tom Harmon, Penn State’s
Director of Police Services,
three of the seven current
members of the Mont Alto
police services department will
be carrying a handguii.
Under the present system,
the campus police are
authorized to make arrests and
are required to attend annual
firearms training, but cannot
carry a firearm and must rely
on the state police for armed
support. It can take up to thirty
minutes for the state police to
respond to a call from the Mont
Alto campus. Some feel this is
too long to ensure the safety of
students. 4
Attitudes about the move
are mixed. Some feel the
change is necessary to avert
potentially life-threatening
situations. Others argue that the
push to arm campus police
promotes a culture of fear and
that arming campus police
might actually increase the
potential danger to students.
Mont Alto Police Chief
ames Sourbier claims that when
students need help, they don’t
expect “a marked police car, an
officer in uniform who's carrying
his nightstick, and his pepper
spray, and his handcuffs... and
no gun.” One student was
surprised to find that campus
police officers were not already
armed; “Police better be
see Guns page 8
Mont Alto freshmen paid
$3,170 per semester for in-state
tuition in 2000. This year, that
figure has risen to $4,590. This
is about a 45% increase, and
this does not take into account
the tuition differential upper-
classmen pay. Despite this
increase, first year students at
Mont Alto pay $614 less per
semester than students who
attend main campus.
How does tuition at Penn
State compare to other state
universities in Pennsylvania?
Millersville is charging $6,081
per year; Shippensburg costs
$5,986 per year. Penn State has
the highest tuition rates of all
the state universities in the Big
Ten, with UP charging $10,408
per year. The University of Towa
has the lowest tuition rates at
only $5,396 per year. For some
students, one semester’s tuition
at Penn State is only slightly
see Tuition page 7
Undecided 22.5
Bush 40
Kerry 37.5
Vanessa Lugo
The deadline
for voter
registration is
October 4 to
participate in
the November
Presidential Election.
You can download
registration forms online at, or Simply
print out the completed forms,
sign at the bottom, and mail
them to the address given. You
can also find voter registration
the local Board of Elections and
other state offices, or, you can
call your local county election
official and have him or her mail
a form to you.
Within three weeks, you
should receive a response telling
you where you can vote and
what time the polls open in your
If you are not going to be in
the area on Election Day,
absentee ballots can be
downloaded and printed from
either of the previously
mentioned websites. You can
also contact your local city or
county election official or
registrar and have one sent to
you. This phone number can be
found in the blue government
pages of the phone book.
if you are away at school, you
must obtain an absentee ballot
see Opinion page 3
Students speak out
Debate over spending
of SAF
Andrea Christopher, Mont
Alto’s Director of Student
Affairs, sent out an email this
summer informing students
that UP had released $6000 in
student activity fee (SAF)
money to Mont Alto and asked
for ideas about what to spend
it on before the deadline.
Christopher’s email stirred a
heated debate between two
highly-visible Mont Alto
students: Zack Mentz and Jim
Mentz argues that “with
1,100 students enrolled last
semester, there should have
been $42,900 to be allocated
back to the students [in SAF].
Out cof that money, according
to Andrea, only about 85% was
spent on the students ... why
did we not get this money
Vomero explains that “the
budget officer for the university
estimates the amount of money
we will have for SAF. This is the
number Mont Alto’s committee
works with all year.
Unfortunately, this leaves room
for error. In Mont Alto’s
history, there has always been
money left over.”
“So where is all the money
from the previous years?”
Mentz wants to know.
Vomero claims that “every
cent since the creation of the fee
has been tracked and is public
knowledge. The money is kept
for the next year. Every cent
travels on.” He points out that
see Students page 5