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Letters: Protecting USC students

May 23, 2012

Re "2 held in slayings of USC grad students," May 19

I was a USC graduate student in the 1970s. I had come from Ohio car-less and poor and was forced to live off campus because USC could not provide housing. When a late class required me to walk home at night, I made sure that morning to wear tennis shoes and dark clothing so my footsteps would be softer and my body less visible.

Gang members confronted us routinely; one student in my complex was beaten up as he was running for safety.

I read about the recent violence in the USC neighborhood with disappointment. I'm mostly concerned about the poorer students without cars whom USC has been unable to keep safe.

USC should use its considerable means to build adequate and affordable housing and good food service on the main campus to accommodate all students.

Charles Derry

Palm Springs

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