Recently, the Office of Residence Life removed the newspaper racks in some residence halls, and implemented some in new locations. Greg Petsche, resident assistant in Sutowski Hall and executive vice president of the Student Union, headed this project.
The main issue with the newspaper racks in some of the halls was securing the racks inside the buildings past the fob doors.
“Since Residence Life moved the racks inside the halls past the fob doors, the delivery drivers were no longer able to get to the old papers,” said Petsche. “We couldn’t give the delivery drivers fob access, as it is a security risk.”
Because of this, the Student Union, whose budget from the Student Activity Fee funds the delivery of the papers, was paying for a lot of unread papers.
“On average, a residence hall, before the move, was using only nine to 11 papers out of the 20 delivered per day,” said Petsche.
Since each location gets three different papers each day – The New York Times, USA Today, and The Plain Dealer – they were paying for about 30 unread newspapers per hall, per day.
John Mack, assistant director of residence life, was also involved in the move.
“The newspaper racks and the newspapers were being used to prop the front doors of the halls on a regular basis,” said Mack. “The racks were initially moved inside the lobby areas, but papers were then being placed on the floor of the entrances rather than getting moved inside to the racks. We were able to secure the racks in Pacelli, Dolan and Murphy Halls where we continue to have papers delivered. Unfortunately, we did have to remove them from the other halls due to these entrances being smaller and not having places to secure the racks.”
The move can only benefit newspaper readers according to Petsche.
“If I kept it the way it was going, we wouldn’t have enough money in the budget to keep the Readership Program going, ” he said.
There is now an additional rack in the Boler School of Business, and new racks in the O’Malley Center, Bernet Hall and the Inn Between. There are no longer racks in Sutowski, Campion, Hamlin and Millor, as these were the residence halls with the fob issues. All the other locations are the same with adjusted amounts of newspapers.
Students seem to be responding well to the change. Sophomore Anna Bobby, who reads USA Today and gets her daily newspaper outside Einstein Bros. Bagels, said, “I felt like when they were in front of the residence halls, people would just throw them around. I felt like it was kind of a waste of money.”
According to Petsche, the change is positive. He said, “Because of the change, we are saving money and more students are getting newspapers.”