July 12, 2024

While “Lil Sibs” weekend is often billed as a great way for Wittenberg students to bond with their siblings, the weekend is also a time for high school students to drink with their college-aged siblings without parental supervision. The Union Board sponsored weekend includes activities like a mentalist show, a “Frozen” movie night, and a carnival, but Union Board’s focus isn’t just on the siblings.
“It’s during the homestretch of school,” said Madeline Kraft, annual events co-chair of Union Board, “which is beneficial because it can be a stressful time of the year and what better way to east the stress than [sic] a fun filled weekend with your sibs!” While it may be beneficial for students to de-stress, there are always two sides to the story.
Even with all of these events, students are still aware that high school aged siblings will be out at campus parties after the scheduled events end. Elizabeth Ames, director of student activities, has worked with Lt. Mark Lopez and other police and security staff to require all siblings to wear green wristbands, identifying them as guests on campus. This is in addition to all siblings being registered through the university with parental contact information. And while a dean’s citation cannot be issued to a non-student, “…all students are responsible for the actions of their guest,” said Lopez. If a high school aged guest violates the law or university police, security may dismiss them from campus, arrest them, or notify parents if the sibling is under 18.
Students from across campus know that younger siblings may be at their party, and few are happy about it, but even fewer want to openly talk about the underage drinking. Younger siblings pose an extra liability for many students who often host parties, and can also cause problems as many may be experiencing their first college party or even their first encounter with alcohol ever. Younger siblings, just like many younger students, may not know the way that alcohol affects them, and students who host parties and allow younger siblings to be there are at-risk of legal trouble if a younger sibling drinks too much. Many Wittenberg students are wary of younger siblings participating in drinking activities, and some have even talked about not allowing them into their parties.
So while sibs weekend can prove fun for both siblings and students alike, students should be wary of the trouble their siblings could get into. Ames, Lopez, and the rest of police and security are focused on both the safety of the guests while still allowing people from outside of our Wittenberg community to experience campus culture.

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