All Posts By

Steven Fucci

Other Transition

Road Trip Series – Arizona State University

August 22, 2016

Over the next few months, I will be sharing a series of blogs that will highlight my favorite road trips. Each post will use one of the country’s largest or more popular higher education institutions as a starting point and is one that can be accomplished in a day. I know that your average college student is not clearing six figures, so each destination will also be cost effective.

What better place to start the series than a school that is consistently in the top five for total student enrollment …

 

School: Arizona State University

Road Trip: Sedona, AZ

Type: Leisure or Activity

 

Have you ever watched an old western movie? Or the movie Sedona? No? Well then it is unlikely you have ever seen or heard of Sedona, Arizona. Regardless of its absent notoriety, Sedona is one of the more exquisite places in the United States. Trip Advisor listed it as number thirteen on the “Travelers Choice 2013 Top 25 Destinations in the United States

Leisure: Swimming Holes

While there are many different ways you can enjoy Sedona, relaxation is probably the most common. Start your trip by visiting one of Sedona’s many “swimming holes.” Between Grasshopper Point, Slide Rock, and “The Crack” on Bell Trail, (to name a few) you will find amazing places to post up for the day. Some of Sedona’s “leisure spots” may require a short hike to get to, but the seclusion and refreshing swim you take at the end are worth the energy.

Grasshopper Point

This is a creek that leads to Grasshopper Point (Photo: Steven Fucci)

 

Activity: Hiking

Looking for a challenging and famous hike? Try Devil’s Bridge! If you are looking for the road less traveled, this may not be the hike for you. The traffic is not that of Mill Avenue on a Friday night, but it is one of the more popular hikes in Sedona. Devil’s Bridge gets its name from it being exactly what it sounds like: a high up, narrow, and natural bridge. The hike to get there is not for the faint of heart, nor the unprepared hiker. Make sure you travel with lots of water and snacks (especially in the summer). Words cannot describe views from this hike and photos will not do it justice, even though I’ll try …

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Devil’s Bridge in Sedona, AZ (Photo: Veronica Domeier)

 

Food and Lodging: Junipine Resort

When you have returned to the downtown area from your swim or hike, you will most likely stumble upon a masseuse who will inform you of all the “cosmic energy” in Sedona. Downtown is quaint, with many great places to eat with a view. Just a little north, however, the Junipine Resort has the accommodations you’re looking for. Off of the woodsy and windy state road 89A, the Junipine Resort has incredible views, along with an affordable menu (complete with Happy Hour). When booking in advance, you can find a room here for less than $200/a night.

Preparation:

When you leave campus for this trip, make sure you consider the following:

  • Do not leave your dorm room unlocked! Sure the people on your floor may be your friends, but the people who might steal your laptop are not. Make sure you have renters insurance incase the unfortunate (burglary, fire, pipe burst, etc.) happens while you’re out of town. You can purchase a policy designed for student’s here.
  • Pack food, lots of water, and proper gear. There are stories every year in Arizona of hikers who get lost and die of heat exhaustion. Let a few friends know when and where you are hiking and don’t try to climb a mountain with flip-flops on.
  • Don’t leave your significant other behind! Sedona can be a fun spot for guy’s/girls weekend, but it is a much better place for a romantic getaway. Beautiful backdrops and wineries, do not say “dude’s trip” to me.

There are few places in the United States that provide the unparalleled beauty that Sedona has to offer. If you’re attending Arizona State, Grand Canyon University, or another school in the area this fall and want to explore the Grand Canyon State, you owe it to yourself to make the drive to Sedona. And if you don’t like it, you are welcome to hassle me in the comments section of this blog.

 

Other Student Life

Hoverboards and Everyday Risks on Campus

January 12, 2016

Two Thousand and sixteen has wasted no time in generating the first “Hot Button” issue for our higher education colleagues in on-campus housing and risk management:

Hoverboards.

Discussions about the safety of Hoverboards were heard at URMIA’s (University Risk Managers)  annual meeting. The ACUHOI (Student Housing) forum and message boards started to featue near daily posts on the topic and now we are seeing frequent school press releases banning students from bringing these motorized boards to campus (GWU and AU Ban Hoverboards). The obvious question students are asking is: “Why? If I am able to bring a skateboard or a bicycle, why can I not bring a Hoverboard?”

It is clear that the purpose behind prohibiting these boards is for one reason, safety.

Students: It’s Not Just About You

“Liability Exposure” is rarely a phrase that will cross a college student’s mind while living on-campus and parents should not count on that changing anytime soon. Calculating the risk of causing a fire in your building when cooking a late night snack or lighting incense in your room does not make for a fun Saturday night. Fortunately – college and university officials have taken a prudent path to eliminate an additional risk for both students and the institutions.

There are a variety of reasons as to why a resident will have to leave their Hoverboard behind. Many are obvious, but others are useful to highlight.

  • Fires
    • This is by far the most popular reason. When recharging the battery of a Hoverboard, there have been numerous cases of over-heating and fires starting from battery problems.
  • Injuries
  • Theft
    • Schools have a hard enough time getting students to keep their bikes locked up or registered (University of Washington Bike Theft). Discussing the theft of a student’s $600+ Hoverboard will not be a fun conversation to have with a student.

Preventative Measures are Necessary, but Accidents Will Always Happen

School officials work tirelessly to prevent accidents and destructive situations from occurring. The Hoverboards crackdown is a perfect example of college officials reducing the likelihood of a hazard.

Although Hoverboards are not likely to be on par with the “Mayhem” contemplated in the Allstate television commercials, there will always be accidents and unexpected events in densely populated student housing.

According to the 2014 Clery Act reports, there were 2,101 fires reported on college and university campuses. These campus fires damaged student and campus property and led to more than 47 injuries. So, it is clear that keeping Hoverboard’s off campus appears to be a prudent path.

Hell No, Hoverboards Won’t Go!

Each diffusion of a trend will have its early majority, late majority and laggards. For those campuses that choose to allow Hoverboards in the foreseeable future, GradGuard’s renters insurance program will be a helpful remedy and student benefit.

GradGuard’s mission is to help protect students, as well as other campus residents, from unexpected financial losses. As a result, we applaud efforts that promote accident prevention and campus safety programs. Even in the best campus environments, accidents do happen and that is where GradGuard’s renters insurance program will be a helpful remedy and student benefit. Here are a few examples of how true renters insurance can be valuable form of protection.

  • Fires
    • If a student causes an accidental fire by recharging a Hoverboard, Renters Insurance will normally cover them for the unintentional damage they caused to the institution’s property and for the damage that may also occur to other student’s belongings.  The damage from small fires within student housing may not be large financially, but the water damage to student property, particularly electronics, can be significant and most often an uninsured student will be unable to afford the financial liability of replacing and repairing such damages.
  • Injuries
    • Remember the Mike Tyson Video from earlier this week. It shows Mike Tyson falling off his child’s Hoverboard. He takes a mean fall. If this injury occurred in my apartment, then I will have Iron Mike’s back ;). This is another benefit of GradGuard Renters Insurance – financial protection from accidents that occur in your residence.
  • Theft
    • Bikes, Hoverboards, Laptops, cellphones, etc. GradGuard Renters Insurance provides coverage for personal property. Whether your school bans Hoverboards or not, GradGuard Renters Insurance will protect your property from theft anywhere in the world.

The Bottom Line

Since I began writing this blog, I received three more emails about other schools that have banned Hoverboards. It is great to see that colleges and universities are quickly putting procedures in place when there is a looming problem and emerging risk.

It will be great to see the same concern focused on the day-to-day financial losses that impact students. It is prudent for campus officials to find new ways to protect students from the financial losses that result from burglaries and fires.The numbers are not small.

Clery data indicate that in 2014 alone, more than 13,000 burglaries and 2,000 fires were reported on campuses.

Although students may often look to their schools to replace stolen or damaged property, the real remedy is the protection that renters insurance provides.

No college or university official wants a student’s education disrupted by accidents, thefts, fires or injuries. As a result, providing a convenient way for students and particularly campus residents to enroll in GradGuard’s renters insurance program is a valuable step in promoting student success.