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When Will You Let Go?: Eastern’s policies are preventing students from maturing into adults.

College is a confusing time for students because we are considered adults but are treated like children. As soon as we are 18, we have officially entered adulthood and we expect to be treated like adults. However, this is not the case at Eastern University. There are rules regarding who can or cannot be in our room, what times they are allowed to be there and whether or not we need to keep the door open when a member of the opposite gender is in our dorm room. These rules do not make us feel like adults, but instead make us feel like children.

As of now, no commuter students or non-Eastern students are allowed to be on campus due to Covid-19 policy. This has been a tiring rule for us because we want our off campus friends and family to be able to visit us and stay in our rooms. I understand it is to prevent the spread of Covid-19, but the university has zero Covid-19 cases and should move into phase D as a reward for being safe and following the rules. Being told you cannot bring whoever you want in, makes it seem like we are children, who do not care about the safety of those around us. 

In addition, the visitation policy makes Eastern students feel like children. Adults do not need to be told when they can or cannot see their friends. That is a decision we make ourselves. We are 18-22 year olds. We are planning on starting our careers, yet we cannot see our friends or have anyone in our rooms from the hours of 11 p.m. to 1 p.m. on weekdays and from the hours of 1 a.m. to 1 p.m. on weekends. 

Let’s not forget that there are zero visitation hours on Wednesdays. It feels as though we are incapable of making simple decisions. However, the visitation hours are not the only issue when it comes to university policy. 

The other key component of the visitation policy is the open door policy, which means that when I have someone of the opposite gender in my room, I must keep my door at least 45 degrees open and there must be a light on in the room. I will say I can kind of (kind of) understand where the university is coming from with its open door.  And, they have made strides to improve this policy by creating closed door buildings.  But even this stride has created a problem.  

As of now, Eagle and Sparrowk residence hall buildings are the only two residence halls on campus that operate under a closed door policy.  This means that when someone of the opposite gender is in your room you can still keep the door closed.  

Unfortunately, these two buildings highlight the gaps in Eastern’s policies.  If students live in Eagle or Sparrowk, then they are given a little more freedom in their decisions.  If students live in any other building, then Eastern is taking away some of the students’ freedom.  This is a clear gap in policy. All students should be treated equally.  But Eagle and Sparrowk residents are given more freedom.  

All Eastern students should be receiving the same amount of opportunities and freedom in their decisions.  Class year does not matter.  Whether you are a freshman, sophomore, junior or senior, you should be given the same freedom across the board. 

Not to mention, if you are in an open door building, then it is even harder to feel like you’re an adult. It feels like an invasion of privacy because people can walk by and look in your room to see what you are doing when you have someone of the opposite gender in the room. Who can come into our room and when is a simple decision that the resident of that specific room should be able to decide, not the university. The rules make students feel like they are incapable of making these decisions because of the visitation policies Eastern has implemented. 

College is a big adjustment for us, but if we are classified as adults at age 18, then we should be treated like adults. Many of us are on our own and working. We are paying for college, groceries and other things that most parents would buy us when living at home. We are old enough to vote and join the military.  

Anywhere else in the country, we are viewed as adults.  But here at Eastern University, we are treated as if we still live under our parents roof. It is not the university’s job to keep college students from making irresponsible decisions.  It is up to the student to learn from their mistakes and grow into more responsible adults. Eastern’s policies not only make it harder to learn from our mistakes, but they also make students feel as if they never grew up at all. 

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