Student Film Debuts in Reeves Theater

Reeves Theater was the host for the premiere of Austin Daniels’ new documentary film, ‘The Rules We Follow.’

The documentary featured the problems with UT’s current alcohol policy, specifically, how it got passed in the first place.

All fingers seem to point to miscommunication and bad timing.

Daniels interviewed Student Government President Andrew Learned and Associate Dean of Students Gina Firth and senior Stephanie Dutka to try to set the record straight.

The mix-up seems to have occurred when emails were sent out to SG members over the summer, when many students were out of state and not checking their messages regularly.

‘I wanted to air this in a public arena to all students,’ Daniels said. ‘The rules were not cohesive. They were not passed in the manner they should have been.’

The major change to the policy was the number of ‘strikes’ students can receive before they are no longer allowed to live on campus. Previously, it was not until the third strike that students lost housing privileges. The new policy, which took effect during the 2007-2008 school year, was decreased to two strikes.

In essence, students could lose their housing in one night, since offenses count as one strike each. To try to make amends, an alteration was made to the policy.

‘They have changed it to where there are recommended sanctions, a guideline we should go by. But it’s really hard to go against what’s written in a book when it says it’s recommended,’ Daniels said.

He continued, ‘I feel like we’ve been deceived. I’m upset about the way [the policy] was made. We weren’t represented. I made this documentary strictly for the students.’

The documentary follows Daniels on his search for answers, which included a late night surprise visit to McKay hall.

The video will be on YouTube soon.

The alcohol policy was supposed to be up for review after two years.

Jackie Maass can be reached at

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