Notice: All forums will be retired as of May 31st, 2016 and will not be archived. Thank you for your participation in this community, and we hope you continue to enjoy other content at

Is UMass too violent

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from BostonDotCom. Show BostonDotCom's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    A recent spate of violence at UMass-Amherst has officials and students alike concerned. But these aren't the first incidents of rowdiness at the school. Riots broke out in Amherst after the Red Sox won the World Series in 2004, the UMass football team won the Division I-AA championship in 1998, after the baskeball team lost in the Final Four in 1996, and even during snowfalls, as snowball fights among students steamrolled out of control.

    Did you, or do you go to UMass? Do you consider it to have violent tendencies? Or do you think officials are inflating the magnitude of a few incidents?

  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from maharani08. Show maharani08's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I attended UMASS - Amherst and agree with AMEBloo, it was the best years of my life.� The newspapers/media around Boston love to publish stories about the drinking and violence at UMASS.� I also agree with the statements AMEBloo wrote about not being able to shelter or squash the incidents.� Private colleges around the greater Boston area do have the ability to "hide" it from the media and address it on campus.� Don't be fooled into thinking that the violence and drinking only occurs at large, public universities.� Talk to students and BU, BC, etc. they will tell you similar stories -- it just doesn't make the news or the pages of the Globe.�

  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from fleetian51. Show fleetian51's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I graduated from UMass last spring and am always embarrassed by some of the morons in Amherst.� Since UMass is a large school and not particularly difficult to get into there is a good population of meathead idiots who love to fight when they drink.� I hate to say it but too low admissions standards allow kids in who really don't belong at or contribute anything positive to UMass Amherst.Unfortunately UMass as a state school is subject to more scrutiny that private schools that are definately more sheltered in their disciplary approaches.My friends and I drank as much as anyone else yet we found a way to avoid fights in our 4 years and all graduated with honors.� I am happy to hear that these dopes are no longer enrolled in the university.�

  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from jesscarp99. Show jesscarp99's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I was there in 1995-96 when�the basketball team�lost in the final 4. People lost their minds and tore the campus apart.� That was certainly embarrassing, but one needs to consider it is a similar environment to Boston after the Sox won the World Series in 2004 in that a lot of the craziest maniacs aren't from Boston or Amherst so they just don't care.� That same year an on campus snowball fight spilled into Amherst center and people decided it was a good idea to flip cars upside down and set them on fire.� Clearly not the best and brightest UMass had to offer.As a UMass grad I must say I'm�equally embarrased by Billy Bulger's former association with the university than anything else.� We had the brother of a mass murderer as president, and when they asked him to leave they gave him a golden parachute pension.� They used to call me looking for a donation to support the university and I would just laugh, tell them to call Billy and ask for his pension back,�and hang up on them.� The moral of the story is blame can be passed down from the top of the food chain to the first-year Freshman that thinks throwing a beer bottle at someone's head is a smart thing to do.LOTS to be proud of out there in Amherst.

  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from cutmesomeslackjack. Show cutmesomeslackjack's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    Totally agree with a55burrell11.� This is absolutely NOT typical.� I went to UMass for 3 years and it never ceased to amaze me the incredible, downright STUPID behavior of certain undergrads and the university's seeming total inability to do something about it.� I was a student during the 2003 ALCS, the 2004 WS, several Patriots superbowls, etc, and each time, regardless of whether the home team won or lost, these geniuses wander out into the quads and start setting things on fire.� Why?� Got me.� There were also racial tensions for as long as I was a student, culminating when a couple "special" student senators were photographed getting drunk in a student government office with KKK cartoons drawn behind them.

    For university administrators to call this "typical of a big state school" is absolutely false.� After UMass I went to grad school at the U of Iowa, a Big 10 school, SERIOUS about our teams (unlike UMass's pathetic athletic programs), and no one ever behaved like that after a game, win or lose.� People also knew how to party without getting into brawls.�

    UMass has never been a party school.� It's a drinking school.� There's a difference.

    Stop making excuses and start expelling students who abuse their independence and make it a lot less enjoyable for the rest of us who want to act like adults.

  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from patriciaj102. Show patriciaj102's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I am a sophomore at UMass Amherst and I live on campus. I have never had any issues with violence on campus and I have always felt very safe. I live in Orchard Hill, which is known for being the most quiet and reserved area of campus. Most of the incidents that have recently occurred took place in the Southwest residential area (this is where the riots occurred last year after the UMass football team lost to Appalachian State), which is known for being loud and party-centered. Most students are housed in this area of campus -- it sort of works as a small city. Because of the large number of students that live in this area and because it certainly lives up to its "partying" stereotype, occasional violence is bound to happen, much like a small city. While these events are, of course, serious, the media definitely enjoys sensationalizing them. It is simply not true that the whole campus is like this. In fact, for the most part, these incidents seem to be isolated in the Southwest area. The other residential areas generally do not experience the same sort of events that Southwest does -- they offer a completely different lifestyle. It is fact that when you have so many people centered in one area, coupled with the fact that many of these people drink frequently, things are bound to happen. I am not excusing the people that are responsible for the various reported incidents, and yes, perhaps UMass needs to do more to make sure that these things happen less. However, given the circumstances, some violence here is unavoidable, as in any area with a large volume of people. There are bound to be a few bad eggs in the bunch. Also, it is unfair to generalize the whole campus -- every UMass student I know, myself included, feels genuinely safe living on campus, especially in residential areas other than Southwest. This is not to say that Southwest is unsafe -- I know several people that live in that area and they have not had any problems, nor do they feel that they will be subject to any problems in the future. However, due to the sheer volume of students living in the Southwest area (as well as many of these students' desire to party hard), things are just bound to happen.
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from sawdusty. Show sawdusty's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    UMass seems like a long time ago. My oldest is the age when I went there. I loved it. There's nothing new under the sun. In the 70's, there were suicides, stabbings, rapes, abortions, drunks, drugs, sex, and the drinking age was 18! I lived off campus. I found that if you looked for trouble you could find it. I used to see�lots of things get out of hand, so I would split. Simple as that. We almost won the Football Championship in 1978 too, but we didn't trash anything. I remember partying with the players when they came back, none of them paid for a drink, and we heard stories about Texas, the food, the guys - that's all. I would be concerned about random violence - shooting, gangs targeting random victims - things like that. Innocent people getting, let's say, some bottle thrown at them from a car is different from two guys taking the fight too far. I don't know all the facts; I just signed up. I say enforce the law and if that doesn't work, get more cops. This really isn't anything new.

  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from exvermonter. Show exvermonter's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I am a graduate of UMASS class of 75. I lived in Southwest and there was plenty of partying going on at all hours. The difference is that what we did back then was only self-destructive (got too high, drank too much, had a bum trip on acid or mushrooms). I do not recall anyone destroying property or hurting someone else. Towards the end of the school year,a desperate student would take a swan dive off of one of the high rise dormitories or the library. Again, that was self-destructive, not destruction of property or violence to others.

    Perhaps violence against others and property has developed over these decades as a result of this generation having been given so much materially, they are spoiled.� Media, video games, movies, TV all� glorify violence and sex a lot more now than 30+ years ago.� This focus has manifested itself in the development of self-absorbed narcissists who think� nothing of using violence against others in the most depraved ways imaginable.

    Maybe we were better off getting high in our dorm rooms and passing out. For sure, no one got hurt that way.

  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from heynow98. Show heynow98's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I much jewelry and other perks did Marcus Camby get to enroll there ?
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from fleetian51. Show fleetian51's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    And BC never had any issues with athletes or gambling...
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from li1wings. Show li1wings's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I'm a UMass Amherst alum. My son is a UMass Amherst alum. I worked at UMass Amherst, and my son works there now. The recent campus-related violence is a sad reflection of current attitudes, particularly among youth, but has little or nothing to do with the school. I say "little" because yes, it is a big campus in a relatively small space and that sort of crowded environment, in a long, lousy winter, in a testosterone-fueled population gives rise to some bad behavior which needs to be better controlled. I say "none" because fights and crime are likely to occur in a similar population almost anywhere. Most importantly, the behavior of a handful of stupid kids certainly doesn't degrade the excellence of a UMass Amherst education. UMass Amherst has some of the most outstanding departments in the country, a number of them ranking with or above big-name private institutions.� The faculty is exemplary. The alumni are represented among the most successful and famous scientists, artists, managers and educators. I think it is unfortunate that the Globe's coverage of events in Amherst, whether the dynamic betweent the campus and the president's office, or a party-gone-bad, is always "Boston-centric" and our campus and town are portrayed as some sort of wild-west-show.� There is culture, academic excellence and yes, life outside the 495 beltway, and those of us who live here count ourselves fortunate to be eighty or more miles distant from the violence, crime and pollution of Boston.

  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from dlencz. Show dlencz's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    "I much jewelry and other perks did Marcus Camby get to enroll there ?"

    People, please do some research so you don't look like a moron.

  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from deliboi281. Show deliboi281's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I as well am a proud UMass Alumni (2003).� The fact is when you put over 20,000 students together from all different social and cultural aspects of life coupled with the "college" atmosphere you are going to have these problems.� And Umass being isolated as it is, a majority of the incidents are on campus, which makes it more publicized as a "violent campus".

  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from laguo. Show laguo's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    If anyone is interested, you can find the Cleary statistics for UMass here:

    The crime stats start on page 30.

    �All universities that accept public funds must publish these statistics on their websites and it turns into a major problem for the University if there are reporting errors. � Presumably, you'll be able to find them for all the other schools mentioned.�

  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from laguo. Show laguo's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    UMass Grad 1991. . .
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from archer1267. Show archer1267's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I attended UMass Amherst for both undergrad and grad. At the time, it had left behind the "ZooMass" label of the 1970s and seemed to be on its way to be a well-regarded public school. I still think there's plenty about the school that warrants _positive_ attention, but sadly, the only time I see any mention in the Globe is when there's an alcohol-fueled uprising of some sort. Or that idiot who fell through the greenhouse while he was drunk.If you take ANY college campus with the population density of UMass, particularly in the Southwest Towers area, you're going to have problems. (Didn't a magazine cover�this very thing�in the early 90s after the whole "elevator surfing incident?") And the school is so big that while there are students there who genuinely want to study and do well, there's plenty of temptation. NO ONE holds your hand for you there, which is a double-edged sword. I learned a lot about self-reliance at UMass. On the other hand, if you regularly miss classes, professors aren't going to come running after you to see what's going on the way they do in small private colleges. Chances are you've got a beleaguered grad student teaching you in a 300+ student lecture hall anyway.I drank a lot and did stupid things, especially when I was a freshman, far away from home and feeling like a bird out of its parental cage. This happened less with each year, but yeah, I either laugh or cringe at my antics. At times I realize how fortunate I was, walking around at night and nothing bad happening. The only murder that happened during my whole time there was Sharon Galligan - and she was killed by a non-student off campus. There was news of a sexual assault once in a while, but the crime log was mostly about vandalism, theft, and minors caught drinking.I absolutely do NOT think the school attracts violent students any more than Harvard does -�Alexander Pring�Wilson? Sinedu Tadesse? Surely you wouldn't dream of saying such things about Harvard.�Give me a break! A few incidents do not a correlation make - would you say that in the case of VA Tech, NIU? Not that either is possible, but if you took away the alcohol and the urban-like living situations, a lot of this stuff wouldn't happen. I'm getting really tired of the Globe jumping on every opportunity to dismiss UMass as a party school out in the sticks...and nothing more.�

  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from elbodega. Show elbodega's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    Yes, I attended UMass for grad school.

    I did undergraduate work at Tufts University where I was a residential assistant for
    two years and two summer sessions. As an RA, I had access to the campus crime reports
    which were given to the residential staff each week during our staff meetings. I say this
    because I wish to illustrate that crime and violence strikes every campus. Some
    institutions do a better job at, for a lack of better word, marketing and PR.

    That being said, Tufts has had its share of date rapes, fights, violence, hate crimes,
    and other stuff that I will refrain from mentioning. I know about these things
    because they were reported to us by the leadership of the campus police.

    Having addented school both at Tufts and UMass, I can say that UMass certainly has a serious
    perception problem. The majority of the student body at UMass are hardworking,
    diligent, and ambitious leaders of tomorrow. Unfortunately, there is a segment
    of the population at UMass that glorify

    - ignorance
    - being a tough guy
    - drinking
    - destruction of property
    - violence

    ...and have a complete disregard for civility. These are the kids who end up costing
    everyone on campus when the university raises tuition and fees to help pay
    to clean up the messes. Whenever there was a big sporting event on TV, I always made sure
    to leave campus for the weekend. At UMass, I've had my car vandalized, had things
    thrown at me, had things yelled at me while walking home late from the library,
    and walked female friends home at night because they were afraid to walk
    home by themselves late at night.

    The solution I think starts way before these kids arrive at UMass and that responsibility
    rests with the parents. Be better parents and teach your kids about responsibility
    and consequences.

    If someone gets intoxicated and causes property damage,
    all of his friends think "hey thats cool" or think its funny. These same spoiled
    brat kids try to rent off campus housing and cry foul when the landlord asks for campus
    police reports to see if the kid had disciplinary problems at school. These same kids
    also cry foul when landlords won't rent to them without a parental co-signer.

    At Tufts, if something happened, they were very quick to have them removed from the
    University. Tufts administration felt that certain behaviors were unbecoming of a Tufts
    student. A high quality education at a place like UMass is a privilege and not a right. All
    of the kids from Tufts that I knew placed high value on their education and actually wanted to
    contribute to society rather than where to "get buzzed."

    Its time to start expecting more from UMass Students.

    Again, this is not everyone at UMass, more so the 5% who continue to bring down
    its reputation.

  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from cdunlea. Show cdunlea's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I agree with your assessments, but would add something else. When I attended UMass/Amherst in the mid 80's there was definitely a "culling" process at work. I spent my first semester in Kennedy, and every night we had Tower Wars (shouting, cursing, etc) and several other freshmen spent way too much time drinking, partying, and doing something other than studying. After a semester of that I moved up to the more sedate Orchard Hill dorms.

    Anyway, many of these yobs are freshmen, and either do not understand what getting through college is about or cannot handle the new freedom of being away from home. These are the characters who throw furniture off the balcony. They inevitably wind up on AP (academic probation) and, since they screwed up their FIRST semester, find it almost impossible to restore their GPA to something acceptable. These people get culled by the end of the year.
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from dvayda. Show dvayda's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    OK,Class of 1990 here, and a current employee of the President�s office. My first year at UMass Amherst was 1986, after the World Series �riots�, which actually amounted to nothing more that 1 or 2 drunk guys with golf clubs and/or bats and a bunch of kids egging them on. At the time the town of Amherst had no public drinking laws and the University followed the towns lead. Amherst changed their public drinking laws shortly thereafter.At the time the Chancellor was Joe Duffy, a good man with good intentions. His priority was to lose the �ZooMass� label and increase the quality of the education and the enrolling students. I�d say that he did a good job.As for the comment I saw about 90% of the UMass news that wasn�t sports related being about some sort of violence: I don�t know what you�re talking about and I don�t think you do either. Everyday there are stories about UMass researchers and alums breaking new ground and getting recognition for their work. Everyday we receive an email with any story where UMass and/or alums have done newsworthy things. And yes, these include any story about ANY type of violence at or around the school. Another thing you'll have to consider is that the fight happened off-campus. Do you really expect the University to attempt to control students actions while OFF campus? Sorry, this isn't a BU situation, where the school doesn't have enough dorms to house the students so they bleed into the surrounding communities. The most any school can do is to expell the students in question.Also, the reporter talks about the "grim" police blotter, which was comprised of a total of 4 incidents over a 3 week span. Considering that their are almost 20,000 students, I'm not sure that these numbers are out of proportion (Even if the reporter cherry picked the timeframe). While an undergraduate I worked as a reporter for the Daily Collegian and we went over the police log daily, looking for anything that should be in the paper. We almost never found anything relating to violence.The annual snowball fights are something that every student should take part in, up until the point that they harm somebody or damage property.The long of the short of it is, people are still living off the �ZooMass� reputation, and the times have already changed.

  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from jvc123. Show jvc123's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I attended UMass Amherst in the mid 70's and there were some problems then too.� It was and still is a great, affordable University, and doens't need the constant stream of bad press it gets from the Globe.��This is far from the first time you've singled out UMass for issues of violence, racism or political cronyism.� It doesn't go unnoticed that you give a free pass to the more ritzy and "privileged" schools in Boston.� Why don't you write a story about the Universitys accomplishments, the success of it's students, and the value of it's education.

  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from jvc123. Show jvc123's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I want to note one more thing.� I graduated from UMass in 1977 and I'm thankful to the school for the excellent and affordable education. I had no problem getting good jobs, and getting into a good Graduate school.� I've done OK in life, have a couple of kids, a great wife, and a nice home in Southborough.� Now let me talk for a minute about Southborough.� It has one of the highest family incomes in the state, a great school system, very high property values, a very educated population,�etc.� The other day I read last weeks police log.� Let's see.... there were two auto thefts, one domestic assualt, a few identity thefts, a couple of assualts, a few car accidents, etc.� Southborough has a population of 9,200.� If the Boston Globe were reporting on Southborough, they would probably call it the crime capital of New England.� They won't do that however.� Do you know why?� Because no-one would belive it.� People would laugh.� People will, however, accept negative and irresponsible comments about UMass, and belive there was a crime wave because of a�couple of incidents.� It's time�for the�students and alumni to stand up for this school!!!!!� The Boston Globe has reporting like this for years.....the kids on campus should start a boycott.

  22. You have chosen to ignore posts from bostonlow. Show bostonlow's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    Well, the BC bashing in this thread was right on cue.� What else is new with UMass?

  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from madriver1. Show madriver1's posts

    Is UMass too violent

    I graduated from UMass in 1976, and had the same experience as texasgardener ("The difference is that what we did back then was only self-destructive (got too high, drank too much, had a bum trip on acid or mushrooms). I do not recall anyone destroying property or hurting someone else.....Perhaps violence against others and property has developed over these decades as a result of this generation having been given so much materially, they are spoiled.� Media, video games, movies, TV all� glorify violence and sex a lot more now than 30+ years ago.")We also had streaking - a non-violent activity.� It's too bad today's kids have no respect for other people or property.� My daughter's at UMass, and I saw the damage students did to their own living area in December 2006 - if these drunk and stupid kids are an example of what this generation will offer society, then� we're in trouble.� But I agree UMass isn't alone with this problem - other campuses have had�shootings as well as assaults, rapes, etc., even if they aren't well publicized.� BTW�for those that don't know the area - Amherst has 3 colleges (UMass, Amherst, and Hampshire) and is a close neighbor to Mount Holyoke (South Hadley) and Smith (Northampton).� Some residents may complain about students there, but pretty much everyone there�derives some of their income from the colleges.�

  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from elbodega. Show elbodega's posts

    Re: Is UMass too violent

    In Response to Is UMass too violent:
    There is no doubt that these types of things happen on virtually every campus in the area, including the private colleges, but with their security being private, the ability to shelter it from the media does (and will) happen.
    Posted by AMeBloo

    And they indeed to occur at private colleges.  I did my undergrad at Tufts
    and grad at UMass.  While at Tufts, I was a residential assistant. We
    had access to a weekly report from campus security and I can tell you,
    yes, plenty of incidents occur at the private universities.

    UMass has a much higher population than Tufts, so the raw number
    of incidents was higher, but I didn't find it any more or less safe.
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from topaz978. Show topaz978's posts

    Re: Is UMass too violent

    The Globe has been unjustifiably bashing Umass amherst for 40 years. They rarely use facts. When they do they cherry pick non comparable situations. I have worked on campus since 1987. Given the population of 23000 people, most under 25 it can be lively, but not dangerous.