Life as a student-athlete in Hale Pohaku dorms


Waihilo Chartrand

Hale Pohaku;a residents hall that is more than what meets the eye.

By Waihilo Chartrand, Staff Writer

Last fall, the women’s volleyball team was in the midst of one of its best seasons ever. However, with four matches to go and a playoff spot on the line, seven players were under investigation for an incident that occurred in a player’s dorm room.

The seven players were suspended from competing in matches until Resident Life had an opportunity to review the complaint and make a decision about the punishment. Unfortunately, Res Life decided to wait eight days — after two matches, both of which were losses and eliminated us from playoff contention — before everyone involved was allowed to play. All but one player was cleared by Res Life.

This situation that happened is unfair to student-athletes, who are punished by keeping them out of games, while regular students have very few consequences. Student-athletes under investigation are not allowed to play (but they can practice) until the investigation is over and they are cleared by Res Life. Regular students will usually just have a fine to pay, or shadow an RA, but they are not suspended from class or given any other punishment.

Our system needs more protection for the student-athletes. It should be the school’s duty to be as fair and just as possible. We cannot allow the fate of a student’s status in the hands of a “he said/she said” game. (Disclaimer: I am a member of the volleyball team and was rooming with one of the accused players, so I have strong feelings about what happened last semester.)

If student-athletes are involved in a situation that puts them under investigation, they should have the chance to be cleared before their next game or have the opportunity to still play during the investigation.

“I completely support the university’s stance to take action and penalize those who have been proven guilty of violating the dorm rules, for example, assessed fines, written statements, community service, etc.,” said volleyball head coach Kahala Kabalis Hoke. “I do, however, wish that we could improve on finding an immediate and more precise process to provide justice, including — and most importantly — not penalizing the innocent bystanders, and pass a swifter judgment on to those who have been found guilty of their transgressions.”

No matter what, I understand that there needs to be rules while living in the dorms, but my point is that being fair is important as well. I also understand that Chamiande is a private college and rules here are different than a public college, but I didn’t think that I would ever be in a situation of being accused of something I didn’t even do. Accusing and assuming that “so and so” was involved in a situation is not acceptable. If you catch that person and have some type of evidence to prove their guilty then yes, by all means they deserve to be punished, other than that going off what someone else said is completely wrong.

Living on campus is convenient, but the main question is if it’s really worth it?