Students are being warned by University College Cork management of the disciplinary and legal repercussions of misbehaving or disrespecting local residents ahead of their annual fundraising week, writes Niall Murray.
Last year’s Raise & Give (Rag) Week raised €16,000 for charity and the 2017 events begin next Monday, with measures being taken by college management and UCC Students’ Union to try to ensure its success.
Among these efforts is the operation of a Student Community Support (SCS) team, which has helped in recent years to maintain a positive relationship with local residents. Following complaints about anti-social behaviour and drink-related incidents near the campus in previous years, students who work with the SCS monitor what is happening and also liaise with local gardaí and residents groups.
UCC’s acting head of student experience, Michael Byrne, has asked all students to support their work, but has also reminded them of the university’s student rules.
“In particular, please note the expectations the university has in relation to high standards of conduct,” Dr Byrne wrote in an email to the student population. “This includes not bringing the university into disrepute and respecting local residents and members of the public.”
Students have been advised that there will be a visible Garda presence in the area around UCC during Rag Week, and they will operate a zero tolerance policy around anti-social behaviour.
“They have asked me to remind all students there can be significant consequences for anyone found breaking the law, including possible restrictions on future travel to the US,” Dr Byrne wrote.
The feeds from CCTV cameras in the area around UCC will also be closely monitored, students have been told.
The charities chosen to benefit from this year’s Rag Week proceeds are Sexual Violence Centre, Autism Assistance Dogs, Bumbleance, CUH Children’s Appeal, and the charitable societies on UCC campus.
While fundraising events are organised from Monday to Friday on and off the UCC campus, lecture and tutorial timetables will be operating as normal during the week.
This story first appeared in the Irish Examiner.