1000 words on how my actions did not live up to NU's expectations, why the rules I violated are in place, and what I will do next time to avoid a similar situation. And yes, I had to use citations...
Case Number ######6901
On June 24, 2011 I was found in violation of Northeastern University’s noise policy as the music emanating from my room was deemed unreasonably loud by my Resident Assistant who happened to live right across the hall. While this event occurred on a Friday night around 7:30pm, I must have had a momentary lapse of reason to have thought that my fellow students living on the floor would not be either trying to sleep or study and that The Notorious B.I.G. playing from my stereo would not allow them to successfully accomplish these tasks.
The noise policy instated by Northeastern understandably exists as a means of preventing audible disturbances in residence halls. Northeastern lists quiet hours for dormitories and, as in this case, on Fridays they are from 1:00am to 8:30am. The University also maintains 24 hour courtesy hours which, according to the Guide to Residence Hall Living, means that “stereos, radios, televisions, musical instruments and all conversations must be kept to a level that will not interfere with other resident’s ability to study or sleep”(GTRHL 2009-2010). If college students are not able to study to the best of their ability due to my loud music, who knows what consequences there could be? Take Bob for example; an engineering student who goes on to build bridges after graduation. He never fully understood section about lateral stress because Biggie Smalls was being played overly loud by the heartless student next door as he tried to study one Friday afternoon. But, he gets hired by a successful bridge building company anyways and begins to build bridges across the country. He becomes wealthy, marries a supermodel, raises a little boy, buys a pet border collie and a nice off-white picket fence that symbolically hold all his hopes and dreams inside. The bridges he builds look fantastic and hold up for quite a while, but then, one by one they come crumbling down in disastrous fashion. Cars become crushed, people break bones and thousands die as a result. Bob and his work go under investigation and it becomes evident that he used the wrong material to handle the lateral stress of the bridge. Further searching reveals that he barely passed the lateral stress section in one of his classes. He is fired, his wife leaves him and takes half of his stuff, his border collie runs away to live with a more successful bridge builder, and the off-white picket fence burns to the ground. Here is a classic tale of the dangers of noise disturbances in dormitories and I, for one, certainly do not want the lives of thousands of people, including that of Bob the bridge builder to be over as a result of my selfish love of the black Frank White’s Gimme the Loot played at high volume.
Reasonably, it is not in Northeastern’s best interests to allow people like Bob to graduate and risk the lives of the citizens of the greatest country on Earth, better known as America; hence the noise policy. It also seems plausible that the University wants to make the student body as happy as possible. One way of doing so is by ensuring the opportunity for success in the classroom by eliminating disturbing noise levels in living quarters (certainly loud construction on/outside of dorms before 8am during the week would not negatively affect students though!). The University expects respectful volume levels so that students can work hard without distraction to accomplish their scholarly and professional goals. I, tragically, failed to act in a manner consistent with these expectations and for that I am deeply apologetic. I hope Northeastern can find it in its heart to forgive me so that I can buy it dinner and we can return to holding hands and skipping through daisy filled meadows abundant in sunshine and rainbows.
Next time I am faced with the decision of either turning my amplifier up to 11 or using headphones I suppose I would have to compromise by turning the volume down to perhaps 6 or 7, whatever is pre-approved and deemed reasonable by a certified Northeastern representative so that 1) I do not disturb those who do not wish to be Hypnotized by Big Poppa and they can better themselves through study or sleep and 2) I am not force-fed a 1000 word essay that takes away precious time out of my day that could be used battling more productive endeavors which could include, but are not limited to: working out, playing Call of Duty, watching the latest episode of How I Met Your Mother, searching for a lost city, discovering the cure for AIDS, winning the lottery, figuring out why it’s necessary for colleges to charge so much for enrollment and what it is they actually do with my money, patenting a revolutionary invention, or having an ill longboard sesh brah! Most importantly, I have learned that Northeastern takes its noise policy extremely seriously and that authoring 1000 words on this policy feels like writing the screenplay for Les Misérables; a punishment that will surely make me think twice about the consequences of disturbing the peace next time I use my sound system. I have also had a revelation as to why these rules have been instated when I realized that by boorishly playing my music at excessive volumes I could potentially be indirectly putting the lives of the innocent at risk, as in the case of Bob the bridge builder. Thank you, Northeastern, for opening my eyes to my inconsiderate actions and disciplining me in a way that will prevent me from again disturbing my fellow classmates who are hard at work studying or sleeping, whether it be midday midweek, or 7:30pm on a Friday night.
Northeastern Housing & Residential Life: A Guide to Residence Hall Living. 2009-2010. www.northeastern.edu/housing/policies/policies.html