It's been a tough spring for officials at Idaho State University (ISU).
In early April, anti-Muslim DVDs were placed on cars around ISU. Ten percent of the student body at ISU is from the Middle East, and some saw the DVDs as a direct threat to that population. Soon after, reports of dorm room burglaries and off-campus attacks have come up – including an off-campus stabbing of a Kuwaiti student last Sunday.
After that incident, the president of the Saudi Student Association wrote a Facebook post condemning the university. The post alleged that ISU has been covering up these kinds of attacks, and is more concerned about retaining Middle Eastern students – for revenue – than protecting them. International students pay three times the amount of tuition that in-state students do.
Stuart Summers is a university spokesman. He denies allegations of a cover-up, and says the school wants to reassure students that their safety comes first.
“We’ve increased our patrols on campus and around the campus area," says Summers. "We’ve applied the use of unmarked vehicles for detection purposes. We have a lot of unmarked public safety officers that are 24 hours a day going around campus.”
Summers says surveillance tapes don’t corroborate some of the claims of burglary and violence on campus. He says the university's working with Pocatello police to follow-up about reported off-campus attacks against Middle Eastern students.
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