In an ideal world, a college campus would be a place of tranquility, love, and peace. Well, one could say that in an ideal world, the whole world would be a place of tranquility, love, and peace. But that may be too much to ask. There are specific reasons why college campuses should be tranquil, peaceful, and filled with love.

College campuses are supposed to be a place of learning. Sure, there are louder, more rowdy activities that colleges are just as famous for as learning, but still. College campuses are also filled with like-minded people in a way that few other places are. Thousands upon thousands of people who all fall into the same age demographic, who grew up in the same era, under the same presidents, with the same cultural landmarks and pieces of technology. When a new college class starts out, it is a melting pot. People from all around the world, from completely different backgrounds, all coming together to learn in one place. But by the end, everyone has become of one mind, in many ways. Sure, there are variances in political ideology, interests, and things like that, but students of a college become a collective society — one demographic.

That is why it would be so beautiful if these campuses operated in harmony, without violence, and without hate. Unfortunately, with incidents like the Virginia Tech shooting and the massive controversy around campus rape happening currently, it has become all too clear that is not the case. On top of those things, there are reported to be over one thousand suicides on college campuses each year, meaning college students are not just in danger from other students or outside intruders, but from their own brains as well.

The reason the discussion around rape and sexual assault on college campuses is so loud and so fervent is because college campuses need to be a safe place. Students from Villanova University to University of San Francisco all deserve safety, and here are some reasons why.

Focus on Learning

As I’ve said before, and as is quite obvious, college campuses are first and foremost a place of learning. I can say from personal experience that the anxiety of not feeling safe on a college campus makes it impossible to focus and learn the things you need to learn to have a successful college experience.

Growing as a Person

Another essential part of the college experience is not just intellectual growth, but personal growth. College is the first time of independence in a person’s life, and they learn so much about themselves and the world in those four years. This crucial growth will be hampered by the creeping presence of danger.

We Must Protect Our Young

College campuses are filled with young, optimistic little birds, and we must allow them to grow in a safe nest in the way all baby birds must. Young people must be put in a safe environment because they don’t know how to fend for themselves.