In late February, a screenshot of a snapchat message between DePauw students was shared on @barstooldpu’s Instagram. The message exchanged between an unknown number of students talked about the “potential” in the incoming class of 2025. The image caption read, “tag your boy who’s definitely been scouting the class of 25 already.”
A couple of weeks later, the image resurfaced on student Instagram stories, labeling the post as a predatory demonstration of rape culture on DePauw’s campus. Additionally, these students criticized the people who liked and tagged the “predators” in the comment section.
“Rape culture is perpetuated by people like you,” senior Jennifer Rivera’s Instagram story read. “The class of 2025 has not even been on campus and y’all are preying on them like sick animals.”
Rivera added that this should be the last thing that the incoming freshmen class should be worrying about.
Sophomore Ashley Carrasquillo called the post out on her story and highlighted that these comments are being made about high schoolers. “If you don’t see a problem with that, you need to get help,” Carrasquillo said on Instagram.
This predatory behavior is nothing new, though. Carrasquillo pointed to the fact that underclassmen, especially freshmen, are already being “coerced” by upperclassmen. “I don’t give a f*** if people are of the legal age to consent,” Carrasquillo said on Instagram. “You are a predator if you’re looking forward to getting with someone who hasn’t stepped foot on DePauw.”
Junior Susan Martinez sent the post to Dr. White in an email that she posted on her Instagram story, calling the messages “vile,” “predatory” behavior.
After the image began circulating on Instagram, DePauw’s Barstool deleted the Instagram post, and did not publicly acknowledge the attention it was receiving.
“Simply deleting a post isn’t enough,” Rivera said on Instagram. “Y’all are well aware of the rapre culture that is perpetuated (especially by fraternities) and the least you could do is acknowledge that.”
Martinez wrote in the email to Dr. White, “no one deserves to be treated like prey or something to choose from a catalogue.”
Dr. White forwarded the email to Vice President of Academic Affairs Alan Hill.
According to Hill, there are currently no posts on the account that are “actionable items;” however, Hill says that they will continue to analyze the situation to figure out what steps, if any, can be taken.
Barstooldpu responded to The DePauw’s request for comment, saying that the post was sent to them by a freshman girl who asked to remain anonymous.
“We felt as if it was funny because there were always current, and older DePauw students who were in our graduating class’s Facebook groups and what not,” Barstooldpu said. “We also did not think people would find it harmful or offensive that freshmen are talking about future students who are only one year younger than them. We do apologize to the people who took it the wrong way.”