Fordham University’s 13 Worst Policies for Students

by Evan Cramb, FCRH ’18

As of October 25, 2016

13. No hoverboards

These two-wheeled personal motor vehicles are prone to catching on fire and riders run the risk of falls and injuries. Hoverboards are also prohibited on New York City streets by state law. (Read the full policy)

12. No biking or skateboarding

According to Public Safety vehicle and parking regulations: “No motorcycles, mopeds, mini bike, bicycles, or skateboarding are permitted on campus roads or paths.” Bikes must be parked at authorized locations near several entrances. (Read the full policy)

11. No sidewalk chalk-writing

No advertising is permitted on the sidewalks or roads on campus, including posters, flyers, and chalk writing. (Read the full policy)

Opinion: “Although this policy is good for protecting campus cleanliness and maintenance, chalk-writing is fun and can be used as a platform to raise broad awareness of issues.”

10. Limitations on filming/videotaping

Only Limited filming may be permitted in the McGinley Campus Center’s non-food service/dining areas and in Collins Auditorium with the express written permission of the Assistant Dean for Student Involvement. Organizing filming and videography by students and or student organizations is not permitted in a food service or dining areas at Fordham University. Filming, photography, and videography on Fordham property by any outside entity requires express written permission of the Vice President for Facilities. (Read the full policy)

9. Limitations on audio recording

Audio recordings of meetings for purposes of record-keeping or later reference is permitted only if all participants are fully-informed that recording is planned and consent is given by each participant. NY State law, only requires that one involved party consent to recording. To record audio of an official student club/organization requires consent of the club and permission from OSI. (Read the full policy)

8. No advertisements for Planned Parenthood allowed

Student publications cannot publish ads containing or providing sources for reproductive services (e.g. abortion, birth control, sperm or egg donation, etc.) or sexual content (1-900 phone lines, strip clubs, web sites, etc.) “Advertisements must be legal, truthful, and compatible with the values and mission of the University as a Jesuit, Catholic institution.” (Read the full policy)

Opinion: “These restrictions unfoundedly stigmatize sexual activity, organizations, and industry. Even worse, this policy makes it more difficult for students to be informed about available reproductive services.”

7. Two-day approval process for student protests

Students must meet with the Dean of Students at least two days prior to picketing, protesting, or otherwise demonstrating on Fordham’s campus. (Read the full policy)

Opinion: “The necessary meeting with the Dean of Students two days prior to protesting can limit student groups from responding immediately to breaking news events.”

6. Only registered student clubs and organizations may invite speakers.

“Individual students wishing to invite a speaker to campus should seek the sponsorship of a registered club or organization.” The club must also consult with OSI prior to extending a final invitation. This limits the potential for individuals to invite speakers. (Read the full policy)

5. Distribution of literature

Distribution of literature (e.g. flyers, pamphlets, zines, etc.) by outside agencies requires written permission from the Dean of Students. Registered student organizations are free to distribute literature with the approval of the Assistant Dean or Director of Student Involvement. Individual students must be sponsored by a University club, office, or department to distribute literatures. (Read the full policy)

4. Restrictions on posting flyers to bulletin boards

Only clubs, organizations, and University departments may post their materials in any designated area only after it has been stamped “Approved for Posting: Office of Student Involvement.” It is unclear whether individuals unaffiliated with an official club, organization, or department can get permission to post a flyer. (Read the full policy)

3. Arbitrarily limited guest passes

Guest passes are subject to a duration limit of two-nights. Passes require 24-hours advance reservation. Only a limited number of passes are issued per building, not per student—forcing competition between residents to accommodate guests. Visitors without a guest pass are required to leave by 3:30am, resulting in young people walking home late at night—through campus or to the subway station. (Read the full policy. See: Visitation/Guest Policy)

2. No overnight guests of the “opposite-sex”

Students living in Fordham University on and off campus housing must in addition to the University Regulations adhere to regulations in the Residential Hall Agreement and the Rose Hill/Lincoln Center Residential Life Handbook. (Read the full policy. See: Visitation/Guest Policy)

Opinion: “Other New York universities grant students more freedom in inviting guests—with no advance notice, for longer durations, and of other genders. This policy demonstrates a clear lack of trust of the administration in Fordham students. Dorm sex segregation shows a regressive understanding of human relations and creates needless difficulties for students in forming and maintaining friendships in which it may be necessary for students of the “opposite-sex” to stay together for a limited duration. Furthermore, these policies erase queer identities and effectively discriminate against gay, lesbian, or other non-heterosexual sexualities as well as transgender students or students of genders that don’t fall into the oppressive male/female binary.”

Read more about Fordham’s troubling “cohabitation” and guest dorm policies here.

1. No condom distribution

The ban on distribution of contraceptives. Distribution of contraceptives and birth control in any form (e.g. male condoms, female condoms, etc.) is prohibited on Fordham’s property and at University-sponsored events. This stretches from university departments like the Health Center to official clubs like Women’s Empowerment and unofficial groups like SAGES. Nor can an individual distribute these materials in bulk. (Read the full policy)

Opinion: “This policy shows Fordham’s blatant disregard for the health and safety of its community members.”

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