UConn students disappointed and annoyed at lecture hall parties

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McHugh lecture hall from above. Many students disappointed at parties taking place in lecture halls, like McHugh, amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo by Eric Wang.

Students at the University of Connecticut recently shared stories of campus parties in lecture halls and academic buildings, and amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, plenty of frustration has come with it.  

The anger comes at a time when the university is ramping up its COVID-19 safety plan, with spring 2021 semester guidelines now stricter than last fall’s protocol. There are no guests allowed in dorm rooms throughout the spring semester, and the winter weather on the Storrs campus has discouraged some students from outdoor activities.  

On Saturday Jan. 30, Reddit user u/OfficialUCPD  posted the following on the UConn subreddit to express frustration at on-campus partying: 

To the people partying in McHugh when our finest showed up,” reddit user u/OfficialUCPD wrote, “Haha get f***** losers.”  

Comments underneath the post showed both surprise at students using an academic classroom as a party venue and some support for the UConn Police Department.  

Rebecca Friedman, a sixth-semester communication and journalism major, described the distracting experience of hearing what sounded like a party while studying in McHugh.  

“We were studying in here, on maybe the second week of classes, and we heard loud, thumping music in a classroom near us,” Friedman said. “This was maybe a Tuesday or Thursday. As we were leaving, I tried to see what was going on inside the classroom but the shades were all pulled down. It was very loud and distracting.” 

Niklaus Xeno, a sixth-semester math and biology double major and USG student body president hopeful said he understands the desire to party, but also understands the necessity of social distancing until the pandemic is under control.  

“Those people are stupid,” Xeno said. “That’s the dumbest thing. Being blunt, I miss parties as much as the next guy, but I wouldn’t do that on campus.” 

John Leahy, a fourth semester finance major, said he couldn’t understand why there had been multiple parties in both McHugh and Oak lecture halls.  

“That is surprising, because I would expect that those parties would get shut down really fast”   

Bo Wicklund, a third-semester psychology major, explained what she believes is increasing the chances of on campus parties. 

“A lot of people feel so prohibited socially, so they are prompted to do something else. Residential halls used to have one guest allowed for some social interaction, but now people have nothing,” Wicklund said. “People always will find a way to do what they want regardless of what’s happening. It disappoints me, we all want the virus to go away, but it’s not surprising. It’s been almost a year of living this way.”  

UCPD could not be reached for comment. 

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