New insurance available for students’ laptops, furniture, expensive items

UNA students chat in Rice Hall, keeping their laptops close to them. Some insurance groups are now offering policies to insure expensive items.

College is a large expense for many Americans, full of fees, tuition, books and other expenses. Many students go to school with laptops, flat-screen TVs and items like iPads.

A new insurance policy is making college students and their parents worry a little less about theft and damage of their priceless possessions.

Insurance policies from insurance agencies such as Worth Ave. Group make it possible to insure students’ expensive college items. According to Worth Ave Group, 38 percent of college students are stolen from during their college years. Also according to Worth Ave. Group, 63 percent of students will damage one of their expensive college items.

In 2011 alone, according to UNA’s crime logs, $4,500 in property has been stolen on or around UNA campus. Chief of UNA Police Bob Pastula said that most of this crime can be prevented by properly securing students’ possessions.

“I don’t think the insurance is necessary if people are responsible and do what they are supposed to do,” Pastula said. “It’s a shame that students have to steal from each other.”

“Lock your rooms and pay attention to your surroundings.”

Pastula suggests that students keep their room keys on them even when they are in the shower.

He said that many students experience theft while they are in the bathrooms at the dorms. He added that students should buy a key chain to hold their keys with them in the shower rooms.

Pastula urges students to report anything suspicious to UNA police or report anonymously through their secret witness page on their website. He said his department is educating students about theft and other issues because the responsibility ultimately rests with the students.

“A lot of the crime UNA has can be avoided,” Pastula said.

UNA sophomore Jordan Brasher said that she has had a few items stolen from her while at UNA.

“My car was parked in the parking deck, and I left my sunroof open,” Brasher said. “My car was locked and my iPod touch was left on my dashboard, and when I came back it was gone.”

Brasher admitted leaving her sunroof open was not the smartest thing to do, but warns that other students should not make the same mistakes.

“It would be interesting to see what percentage of students actually have the insurance,” Brasher said. “Or the percentage of students that know about it.

“Let’s be honest, most students are paying for college out of their own pockets or their parents’, and that’s just another sum of money to have to spend.”

Brasher said when she moved into the dorms on campus, she was informed of the insurance, but brushed it off thinking she didn’t need it.

Brasher said there is only one thing students like her can do to ensure nothing is stolen: lock everything.