College students can still have fun celebrating Halloween

Halloween is approaching; some would say it is the most fun holiday of the year, but now you have to find something exciting to do.

Trick-or-treating, while being the best Halloween activity, is seen as no longer socially acceptable for college students, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find something just as fun to do. While there are parties thrown around this time, this isn’t always the vibe for everyone.

Have a Halloween Feast

Obviously, the best part of Halloween is the candy. As you can’t go door-to-door begging for it, you can make your own fun foods. There are an endless amount of fun Halloween recipes online that only take a few ingredients. Each person can bring their own fun recipe and have a blast snacking all night long. 

  • Caramel Popcorn
  • Crescent Roll Witch Hats
  • Martian Marshmallows
  • Halloween Punch

Scary movie marathon

Grab some popcorn and candy to cozy up for the night. Scary movies are the epitome of Halloween, there’s never been a time where scary movie marathons aren’t a good idea. Tons of new Halloween movies have been released, including the new Halloween Kills.

Pumpkin carving

Pumpkin carving has been a tradition for years, so have fun with it and create your own fun and spooky designs. Once you’re done, you’ll have plenty of pumpkin seeds to roast and snack on throughout the night. 

“I love carving pumpkins because it’s fun to see all the creative things people come up with,” said Sydney Johansen, a junior education major from Tooele. 

Everyone can have fun with their own pumpkin or you can spruce it up a bit and create teams to have a carving contest. 

Go to a haunted house 

Haunted houses are a great idea for big groups of friends. There’s nothing like being scared out of your mind and hanging onto your friends for support. Staheli Family Farm has several fall attractions, one of which is a haunted house, the Field of Screams. Ticket prices start at $20 and they are open until Oct. 30. What’s better than facing your fears with your closest friends?

“One of my favorite things to do is go to a haunted house with my friends because it’s so fun and I love to be scared,” Johansen said. 

Have a costume contest 

Halloween is all about costumes whether they are scary, cute or funny. Hosting a costume contest can be as simple as you want. All you’ll need are a couple of judges, prizes and a few different categories if you want. This is a great way to bring all your friends together for a fun night filled with crazy costumes. 

“Halloween is by far my favorite holiday,” said Senisa Zambrano, a junior mechanical engineering major from Pleasant Grove. “Between the costume parties, the perfect weather, and pumpkin spice everything, in my opinion, October doesn’t last long enough.”

Campus group proposes alternative name

A student and professor teamed up to create an organization proposing an alternative new name for Dixie State University: St. George State University.

Kaitlyn Larsen, a junior business management major from St. George, and English professor Alex Ence joined together to create a group called “Name it St. George.” Their mission is to educate the student body and community about why Utah Tech University is not a good fit for the university and why the new name should better represent the region.

Following the DSU Board of Trustees’ recommendation that the new university name be Utah Tech University, The Utah Board of Higher Education voted Wednesday to recommend to the Legislature that the name be changed to Utah Tech University.

As stated in H.B 278, Name Change Process for Dixie State University, “Should the board of trustees choose to forward a name for the institution to the Utah Board of Higher Education under Subsection (4)(a), the board of trustees shall ensure that the name reflects the institution’s mission and significance to the surrounding region and state.” 

Ence said the recommended name does not meet this requirement stated in the bill because it does not adequately represent the surrounding region.

Ence decided to reach out to a student who has also been vocal about her disagreement with the proposed name and bring attention to the rest of the DSU community.

Ence and Larsen have been speaking with members of the Legislature (who have asked to not be publicly named) about their proposed name and have been told that the Senate has the same concerns about the name changing to Utah Tech University.

The two women plan to go before the House Education Committee when it holds the meeting to vote whether to send the proposed name to the Senate or not. 

Larsen said during the time the university created surveys to narrow down a new name proposal, she felt like the majority of the community favored the names that represented the region, such as Desert State University and Greater Zion University, but “those were completely set aside by the Trustees and they just went with what they wanted anyway.”

After the community backlash in response to the original proposal, Utah Polytechnic State University, the Board of Trustees altered their recommendation to Utah Tech University. Larsen said although the university probably felt like this was a compromise, it was not because it still does not meet what the students want.

Larsen said: “I feel like southern Utah is so unique… so it feels weird to be generic with the rest of them like Utah Valley; I like that [our name sticks] out. I love Dixie but I understand that it has to change and I respect it, but I wish we could pick something that can represent the heritage because our heritage is what this whole town has been built on.”

The intention of the group is to educate students, Larsen said. She was shocked at how many students thought the new name was already finalized. 

“Students’ futures can rely on the name, so it’s not good to not pay attention and know what’s going on,” Larsen said.

Although Larsen said her future career won’t be hurt by the name change, she has friends applying for medical school who have been told that they need to transfer because if their degree has a tech school on it, they don’t qualify.

Ence said even though DSU administration is promoting it to be different from other tech schools because the university still offers other programs, it can still cause confusion and the marketing is going to be complex.

Ence said: “I am supportive of the name change, but the reason I didn’t love Utah Tech is because it cuts the community out. That has been my concern from square one… St. George was the original name, so we feel like that is getting back to our roots.”

In the end, Larsen said everyone should fight for the name they respect and believe in.

“Name it St. George” held a “Red Out” event on Oct. 20 as a silent petition for the student body and community to keep the name local. The group will continue to raise awareness on campus by talking with students and posting on their social media account regularly.

Attempts to contact the DSU Board of Trustees Chair Tiffany Wilson for comment were unsuccessful.

Six must-watch horror films this Halloween

There’s no better way to celebrate Halloween than curling up on the couch to watch classic horror films.

Horror may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but people gravitate toward the genre because horror films send your body into fight-or-flight mode, flooding your body with adrenaline and euphoric brain chemicals like dopamine and endorphins.

Whether you watch horror films for the adrenaline rush or simply because you are a horror film fanatic, here are six horror films you need to watch this Halloween.

“Us” (2019)

Jordan Peele, the director of “Get Out,” is the mastermind behind “Us.” The film centers around the Wilson’s family vacation at their beachfront home. Adelaide Wilson, the mother of the group, is still reeling from a past traumatic incident and fears something bad is going to happen during their vacation. Her fears are confirmed when a group of masked strangers ambushes the family. Once the strangers reveal their identities, the family realizes they must fight for their lives against carbon copies of themselves.

The film begs the question: “What would you do if you had to confront an alter ego version of yourself?” If the description of the film is not enough to convince you, Rotten Tomatoes gives “Us” a score of 93%, and the film generated $70 million during its opening weekend.

“Psycho” (1960)

“Psycho” is a classic horror film directed by the infamous Alfred Hitchcock. The movie tells the story of a woman on the run after stealing money from her employer to fund her plan to run away with her boyfriend. Exhausted from driving while evading the police, she stops at the Bates Motel for the night. At the motel, she meets the peculiar Norman Bates, who takes a mysterious liking to her.

“Psycho” has been credited as the first modern horror film and the film’s iconic shower scene helped to launch the slasher sub-genre of horror films. Similar to “Us,” “Psycho” has a stellar Rotten Tomatoes score of 96%.

“The Babadook” (2014)

“The Babadook” captures the experience of a widow who learns a monster from her son’s children’s book has come alive and is terrorizing them in their home. The film boasts an even higher Rotten Tomatoes score than “Us” and “Psycho” with a rating of 98%.

“The Babadook” is a personal favorite horror film of Nate Snow, an assistant professor of media studies. He said “The Babadook” is his favorite horror film because it tackles the universal experiences of grief, loss and pain, so the film resonates with everybody.

“It [The Babadook] manages to scare you at a deeper level than just a jump scare,” Snow said.

“Jennifer’s Body” (2009)

“Jennifer’s Body” follows Jennifer Check (played by Megan Fox) as she navigates life after being sacrificed by an indie rock band. She becomes possessed by a demon during the sacrifice and develops an insatiable hunger for human flesh. This hunger leads her to feast on the male population at her school, much to the dismay of her friend Needy (played by Amanda Seyfried).

Despite tanking at the box office when it was released in 2009, the film has had a resurgence in popularity, and according to Insider, it’s become a “feminist cult classic.” Overlooking the film’s poor Rotten Tomatoes rating of 45%, Matthew D., who reviewed the film on Rotten Tomatoes, gave the film a five-star rating.

“Jennifer’s Body is genuinely fantastic with creative filmmaking, endearing acting and an unbelievably cool soundtrack,” Matthew D. said.

“Hush” (2016)

“Hush” takes a unique approach to home invasion horror films as it focuses on a deaf woman being hunted by a killer in her home. Sound is removed from certain — particularly tense — scenes throughout the film to immerse the audience into the woman’s world as she tries to fight back against a killer who has the leg up on her because he can hear.

The uncommon nature of “Hush” within the horror film genre, earned it a 93% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

“Before I Wake” (2016)

Megan Donnelly, a senior biology major from Las Vegas, said her favorite horror film is “Before I Wake.” The film was well done and features her favorite actor, Jacob Tremblay, as Cody.

“I don’t want to give it away, but I like the overall meaning behind his [Cody’s] nightmares,” Donnelly said.

“Before I Wake” focuses on foster parents who welcome a young boy named Cody into their home. Cody tells the parents he is scared to fall asleep, but the parents brush off his fears because they think it’s a normal fear for most young children. Soon, the parents learn Cody’s dreams and nightmares become reality, so they have to discover the true nature of his abilities before his dreams hurt him and his parents.

Whether you love horror films or you are new to the genre, make sure to put these films on your “must-watch” list to celebrate the spooky season.

OPINION | True crime affects your mental health

Crime Junkie, Cold, My Favorite Murder, and Tiger King are all examples of popular true crime that could be affecting your mental health.

True crime is told through podcasts, films, and books and tells the stories of real serial killers and murders. While true crime offers great entertainment, it can be detrimental to your well-being.

True crime has grown in popularity on all platforms. Netflix has released 18 true crime films since March 2020. Eight of those films held the number one spot on Netflix’s top charts for a total of 58 days.

According to The Ringer, the true-crime films on Netflix have cumulatively totaled 232 days in the top ten charts. The 232 days is around half of the total days that Netflix has begun showcasing the top ten.

True crime is especially popular among women. Women throughout the years have shown more interest in true crime than men. Popular podcast Wine and Crime reported that 85% of their audience is female.

The popularity of true crime proves its exciting nature, but too much consumption of true crime is detrimental to our mental health.

The effects of true crime can include increased fear of leaving the house, being paranoid around people, and higher anxiety.

An article from the Cleveland Clinic on the effects of true crime stated: “Too much true crime ceases to be about curiosity and starts becoming fear-based instead. When we start to feel worried and afraid all the time, it takes away the fun of it. It starts to instill anxiety in us instead.”

The excitement of true crime is the same as the excitement of horror movies, but it is a more realistic fear. The reality of the crimes can turn the fun into a daily mental health struggle.

When it is too much you will feel a difference. I have personal experience with obsession over true crime. I was hooked on the Cold podcast which tells the “cold case” story of Susan Powell. It consumed my thoughts and I experienced increased paranoia. When it began to cause me to lose sleep I decided to ease up and listen less often.

This is not to say consuming any true crime is bad. People enjoy true crime to take note of how to defend themselves if they ever found themselves in dangerous situations.

True crime is still great content, but it can be beneficial for your mental health if you split up consuming crime content with comedy, romance or fantasy. These genres act as a reminder of the lighter aspects of life which can make all the difference.

Although it is called true crime, according to EliteDaily, “It’s an unfortunate reality, but oftentimes, justice isn’t served as quickly and efficiently as true crime shows would have you believe.”

The excitement of true crime is uncovering the mystery, but criminal cases aren’t as simple as they may seem on the media.

If you are a frequent consumer of true crime, take a break and see how true crime has been affecting your anxiety, fear or paranoia.

Halloween costumes hiding in your closet

Not saying your clothes are scary, but with a little creativity, your closet could make costumes that will not break the bank.

Here is a list of five trendy ideas for your Halloween costume.


All you need is animal print, crazy hair and makeup or paint.

Even if you do not own any type of animal print, this costume is still convenient. Purchasing animal print fabric from a craft store such as Hobby Lobby can be made into a quick top, bottom or headband.

No sewing is required for this look. Cutting the fabric to fit how you want and the ability to tie it will create the perfect wild caveman look.

The last touch for this costume could be achieved with makeup or paint. Use any makeup to create the look of dirt or mud that would be unavoidable for a caveman. Paint could be used to add warrior or tribal type markings.

Backcombing your hair is a technique that can be used to achieve the wild hair look. Adding braids through the crazy hair is an option for those with long hair.


This trendy music festival in California is known for it’s over-the-top outfits. This costume can be unique depending on your individual style.

Keep in mind that bandanas, glitter and fringe are key to obtaining the classic Coachella look. There are many blogs and articles about Coachella outfit ideas such as this one from Chic Pursuit.

Face jewels and glitter bring out the over-the-top look such as this pack from Amazon. Sunglasses and bandanas show the necessity to protect yourself from the California sun and dust which is prevalent during Coachella.

One style category that is prevalent during Coachella is bohemian. This style is created by different patterns, textures, and color. Usually, different layers create a more loose and flowy look.

According to an article by Vevano Home: “The core of the bohemian aesthetic is that it’s personal and relaxed. Boho styles are not styled for any other person’s enjoyment but your own.”

This costume can reflect your personal style in a more head-turning way, so have fun with it.

Student Loans

This costume idea came from the costume shop manager in the theatre department.

“A college student adjacent costume is student loans, being the scariest costume of all,” said Emma Daniels, Dixie State University alumna.

This costume has a comedic aspect that is shown in an obvious way. A T-shirt or even a paper taped onto a shirt which says “college debt” or “student loans” will showcase the irony for this costume.

Wounded Boxer

Any athletic top, bottoms and shoes will complete this costume. The parts of this costume that make it unique is the fake wounds, silk robe and boxer gloves.

Fake wounds are achieved with makeup to create a bruised look. Band-Aids are also an easy way to add fake wounds.

Any silk short robe of any color would work but Amazon also carries them at an inexpensive price.

Boxer gloves are not necessary for this costume but will take it to the next level.

For those with long hair, boxer braids are perfect for this costume.

Lonely Ghost

Very trendy on social media is the store created by influencer Indy Blue and Bronson Christensen called Lonely Ghost. The store’s logo is an iconic ghost.

This costume has been done by the company in years past and is available for purchase.

A cheaper way to achieve this look is by taking a white sheet and either drawing eyes or cutting out eyes that resemble the ghost. Arm holes could be cut for a more practical feel if desired.

Pairing the costume with your trendiest tennis shoes will showcase the Lonely Ghost brand best. For example, Converse’s Chuck Taylor high-tops are one of the top trends and are showcased on Lonely Ghost’s Instagram numerous times.

The sheet ghost is a classic costume that has been done throughout the years. Creating the Lonely Ghost costume is a trendy twist.

Items for any of these costumes could also be found at dollar stores or thrift stores.

Daniels said: “When it comes to making your costume, thrift stores are your best friend. At the thrift store, look for items that you can convert into other items such as a sheet that you can make a toga or taking unconventional items like books, cookware or toys, deconstructing them, and making them something new.”

Don’t be intimidated by creating your costumes from scratch because they have the ability to stand out from the crowd. Most importantly, be creative and have fun.

Opinion | It’s not just about the degree

Congratulations are in order to all of you who are in the process of getting your college degree; however, it might not be enough.

College is a glorious experience really anyone can take part in, but in the process of getting your degree, it is important to step back, look at the big picture and think if that piece of paper alone will be sufficient when it is time to enter the workforce.

Once you have finished your college years and are currently in the process of looking for a job in your desired field, it is safe to say we are all aware we will not automatically be guaranteed a job. Just like you, there are hundreds of thousands of individuals who went to college and completed their degrees — quite possibly with an even higher overall GPA than you — so what exactly can one do to get the upper hand when it comes to landing their desired job?

The solution is simple: Become more involved outside of required coursework. I know the majority of us would much rather spend our time focusing solely on the coursework given; however, doing just the bare minimum will not make your resume stand out in future interviews.

“For the majority of college and university students, involvement in extracurricular activities plays an integral role in the collegiate experience,” Stateuniversity stated. “Students become involved in extracurricular activities not only for entertainment, social, and enjoyment purposes, but most important, to gain and improve skills.”

Now I am in no way discrediting a college degree or this significant accomplishment by any means, I am merely stating the importance of the activities you can take part in alongside your required course work which will only enhance your capabilities after college.

Alongside your required coursework, finding other classes as well as clubs and student organizations would be to your advantage. After all, college isn’t just about the courses one must take to obtain a degree but what you can do to ensure a far more sound future.

“When you’re signing up for courses next semester, be strategic. Seek out courses that center around student projects, case studies or service learning,” Wheelock College stated. “Some courses may even lead to an industry certification. Employers want to see these courses outlined on your resume.”

There are various groups right here at Dixie State University which allows students to get more involved, build useful connections, and expand their resume and skill set.

Take The Dixie Sun News for example. We are an organization located right here on campus and give the opportunity to students to get a hands-on learning experience in various forms of media production all while receiving class credit for our efforts.

If media production doesn’t suffice to your interests, we are only one of the numerous student organizations DSU has to offer. If you are an individual who may be at a loss for where to start getting more involved with such activities and courses, I advise you to reach out to your adviser for a helping hand while navigating through these college experiences.

As I have stressed previously, it is imperative each and every student makes a point throughout their college career to build a strong leading resume in which they are able to present when in search of employment. You want to stand out in this vast fish pool, and there is no better way of doing so than having a well-built resume.

“Your resume is a quick snapshot that contains all of your experience and accolades in your life,” a Peterson’s article stated. “You will continue to build your resume throughout your lifetime all the way until you retire.”

To all of you who have yet to start the expansion of your experiences, it is always the perfect time to start. After all, it’s never too late until it’s too late. With spring semester on the horizon, a fresh and new start awaits us all.

With that being said, every student needs to look further into the experiences they can accumulate in order to expand their resume. Best of luck Trailblazers, and here’s to making the most out of our time in college.

Chaos: What is it?

The biggest party of the year is coming up this Saturday night, are you going to be there?

Dixie State University’s annual Halloween party Chaos is going to be held Oct. 30, this is your chance to party it up. DSU had to cancel Chaos last year due to COVID-19, so there are two classes of students who have yet to attend the biggest party of the year.

“Chaos is going to be the biggest event that we’ve ever put out at this university and we are planning for a 6,000 [person] capacity, so it is going to be the biggest event ever done at Dixie State for students,” said Devon Rice, a junior business marketing major from Bountiful.

You can now purchase tickets and keep in mind the price will go up as the week continues.

“Definitely buy tickets before they get to the door, if they have friends from northern Utah, anywhere in Utah, we are the only university in Utah that is allowing outside students into this event,” Rice said.

You may think it is just a dance party, but it is much more than just that. Here are the events you can expect to see at Chaos this year, along with the iconic dance party:

  • Haunted house
  • Oxygen Bar
  • Carnival games
  • Fortune teller
  • Tarot card reader
  • Photo booth
  • Silk ariel performance

“This is the event of the year, we bring in all the stops to make it an unforgettable experience for all of our students,” said Kristen Crawford, a junior business administration major from Provo.

Crawford also serves as DSUSAs lead event planner, her and her team have worked hard to ensure this event is perfect for each student at DSU. Their goal for this years Chaos is to have the most renowned dance party in the state. Another goal is to bring students together to not only meet fellow DSU students, but also students from other universities.

“I am just looking forward to hitting that goal of over 5,000 students coming to an event, that will be monumental and that is gonna set the precedent for the future of the university,” Rice said.

Rice is the vice president of student life for DSUSA as he helps plan all of the events for students. He said all of the events are planned by students, for students.

Crawford said: “It’s a huge event that I and so many others have put so much work into. I’m excited to see how many people we can bring together. This is an event that people will be talking about for years, and I’m excited to be an integral part of it.”

It is important to note the following will not be allowed: bags, Halloween costume masks, fake or real weapons, and reentry. Ensure that you follow these simple guidelines and you will be able to have a blast while also being and feeling safe.

The event will be held in the Burns Arena and softball parking lot and will start at 9 p.m.

Three best, worst rated DSU student housing options

No matter how many student housing horror stories you hear, there are still highly rated places you can live in during the school year.

Dixie State University has over 20 student housing options between on and off-campus housing. It is no secret some housing options are better than others, and the Google reviews of each complex showcase their individual strengths and flaws.

3 Best Student Housing Options

Best-rated apartment: Dixie Red Sands South

Located 0.6 miles from campus at 1042 E. 600 S., Dixie Red Sands apartments have a google review score of 4.9/5 with a total of 10 reviews.

The Google reviews state their love for the large private rooms, plenty of storage, and a great distance from campus.

The Dixie Red Sands South apartments are $2,500 per semester.

According to the Dixie Red Sands South website, each apartment has six private rooms, three bathrooms, an in-unit washer and dryer, and are fully furnished.

Second best-rated apartment: Dixie South

Located at 638 S. 800 E., Dixie South apartments have a review score of 4.8/5 with a total of 72 reviews.

The majority of Google reviews said they think the price is reasonable and felt management was responsive.

Dixie South apartments are a two-minute walk from campus and have the option of private or shared rooms.

The shared rooms are $3,185 per semester if you agree to a one-time payment or $375 monthly for nine months.

The private rooms are $6,370 per semester for a one-time payment or a total of $6,570 for a two-time payment.

Third best-rated apartment: The Stay

Located at 175. S 1000 E., The Stay apartments have a review score of 4.6/5 with a total of 156 reviews.

The Google reviews said they love the management and it feels like home with nice amenities.

The Stay has an option of a shared room or private room anywhere from $1,750 – $2,750 for a semester.

3 Worst Student Housing Options

Third worst-rated apartment: Red Mountain

Located at 333 S. 1000 E., Red Mountain apartments have a review score of 2.1/5 with a total of 61 reviews. Thirty-eight of the 56 written reviews had a score of 2/5 or less.

Most of the Google reviews have complaints toward the management and how the apartments were not ready by move-in day.

The upside is Red Mountain apartments are located 0.3 miles from campus making it easy for students to walk to class.

Residents have shared rooms for around $359 per month or around $1,615 for the semester.

Second worst-rated apartment: Abby Apartments

Located at 495 S. 900 E., Abby Apartments on-campus housing have a review score of 1.8/5 with a total of eight reviews.

The Google reviewers state their frustration with the apartments not being ready for move-in day and management never addressing the residents’ complaints.

At the Abby Apartments, students have the option of a shared room or a private room.

According to DSU’s website, shared rooms are $1,450 and private rooms are $1,800 per semester.

Worst Rated Apartment: Campus View Suites I

Located on the northeast side of campus, Campus View Suites I has a review score of 1.5/5 with a total of four reviews.

The Google reviews complain of spotty Wi-Fi, early construction noise from campus and unresponsive staff.

“DSU has clearly spent a lot of time to make this building look appealing, but a closer inspection shows that there’s not much else but looks,” A Google review written two years ago by Mac Kinlay said, “During the school year the staff do try to be helpful and pleasant, but as soon as the year ends their attention turns to getting everyone out as soon as possible.”

At the Campus View Suites 1 have the option of shared rooms or private rooms. Shared rooms are $1,749 a semester and the private rooms are $2,499 a semester.

OPINION | Students should be able to defend themselves

Students in St. George don’t have the resources to be able to defend themselves from an assault on and around campus.

Dixie State University doesn’t offer enough self-defense classes to its students. The FAST program has one self-defense class available (FAST 1407) to all students which is open for enrollment each semester. 

Self-defense doesn’t only mean physical defense, mental defense is also important. Assault isn’t only physical, there are a lot of people that are mentally and emotionally assaulted every day. DSU doesn’t offer enough self-defense courses to its students to be fully prepared for what could happen. 

We’ve all gotten the alert emails informing us of an assault that happened around campus, but we never see the university do anything to combat this. We’ll see more DSU campus police patrolling for a few days, but once it’s been forgotten, that stops. 

DSU should offer more classes to students that will help with physical and mental assault. Learning to fight back the bullies who only use words is just as important as fighting the physical attacks.

According to Emrald Sethna from the Odyssey, “Youth affected by crime develop lifetime habits of mistrust, low self-esteem and have a greater chance of getting into physical confrontations.”

For those who have been affected by assault, it’s harder to find the strength to fight against it when it’s already affecting your life so deeply. By offering more classes to help students, DSU can lessen the number of assaults on and around campus, therefore making it a safer place.

Considering St. George is a high trafficking area, students are more at risk than others would be. Making sure there are enough well-taught classes is important to keep students and anyone in the city safe. 

According to Meg Stone from HuffPost, “College administrators and everyone else committed to student safety should ensure that self-defense programs are relevant and well-taught.”

Ensuring those teaching self-defense classes have the right qualifications to teach is important because it makes or breaks the lessons learned in the class. If the instructor isn’t the right teacher for it, students won’t learn anything valuable and still won’t be able to defend themselves the best they can. 

According to The New England Journal of Medicine, “Most campuses use programs that have never been formally evaluated or have not proved to be effective in reducing the incidence of sexual assault.” 

Simply having a self-defense class offered does not mean that it’s giving the education to students that it should. DSU should be more involved in self-defense for its students and make sure they are doing everything they can to keep their students safe. By offering more self-defense classes, community events, even weekly events, will provide the community with the knowledge and skills they need to protect themselves.

Students follow procedures to stay safe living on-campus

When moving out and being in a new setting, learning how to stay safe is a crucial part to ensure your safety while living on campus.

For some, this might be the first time you’re living on your own. While there are benefits to getting a taste of what it is like to be independent, with this newfound freedom there is a slight price to pay: Keeping yourself safe.

Blair Barfuss, chief of police and director of public safety, said Dixie State University On-campus Housing has multiple policies as well as procedures employees and resident assistants have to abide by to guarantee a safe living environment for students.

Barfuss said DSU greatly encourages students to download the DSU Safe app on their smartphones. The reason for such a push on this app is because students are able to call police dispatch or even make a report in the app and remain anonymous if they wish to do so.

The DSU Police Department has an average time of three to five minutes when responding to a call, but they could possibly respond at an even quicker time depending on how close an officer is to the scene and if the call was placed to police dispatch or 911, Barfuss said.

To ensure students are receiving the care they need at all hours of the day, it is best to call the general campus security phone number only Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., but at any time not listed, be sure to use other resources, Barfuss stated.

“DSU works tirelessly to keep students aware of any possible safety and security issues,” Barfuss said. “We live in a very safe and statistically low crime area [and] significant crimes against people are rare on-campus. As a community, our DSU students, staff and faculty do a really good job of being aware and reporting anything concerning for police to investigate.”

Because of the diligent work the DSUPD puts into keeping this campus safe as well as the help from fellow students, faculty and staff, those who live on campus have multiple resources in case of an emergency.

Although campus police are readily available, Haylie Jacobson, a sophomore English major from Riverton, said she personally doesn’t feel safe at her on-campus housing.

Jacobson said: “Honestly, I don’t feel that safe. I live at [the] Abby Apartments, and there have been sexual assaults here this year, and last year my friend’s car was broken into. The parking lot here is dark, and I am a little scared at night.”

Jacobson said she has also noticed other on-campus housing units being given far more attention than others. For example, the Campus View Suites buildings receive more recognition for its safety while buildings such as the Abby Apartments receive far less.

Regardless of where a student may currently live on campus, everyone should follow specific procedures to ensure safety in and outside of the home.

“My roommates and I keep the door locked pretty much all of the time and we fully lock it at night,” Jacobson said. “I almost never go out at night by myself, and I always have pepper spray with me.”

Angie Groneman, a junior English major from Las Vegas, has also shared some tips for students to feel far more safe in their place of residence at DSU’s on-campus housing.

Students should find a group of individuals whom they feel comfortable with so each student can always have someone looking out for them and vice versa, Groneman said. When leaving your apartment building, it is best to inform your close group of friends of your whereabouts to further enhance your safety.

“Something I recommend to other students living on campus in order to stay safe is to just have a group of people to talk to and keeping an eye on each other,” Groneman said. “My friends and I did this through meeting each other and making group chats.”

While there are events that may happen out of your control, you can still take precautions in order to greatly enhance your chances of staying safe, especially during your time at DSU.