Photo: Matthew Marcucci / Public Domain/ English Wikipedia
Like the Penn students that study there, Fisher Fine Arts cares more about its appearance than what's inside. Its backpack-checking policy, which requires a security guard to check students' backpacks for snacks and other highly illicit items as they enter, reveals what this library really cares about: its beautiful interior. They might as well place a sign by the entrance that says, "Stealing books is welcome here, but your granola bar isn't."
Students report that Fisher's backpack-checking policy is less effective in practice than it is in theory: in reality, it has roughly a 0% success rate in preventing snacks from entering. "I sneak a sushi bowl in with me each day. Why do I have to keep opening my backpack if no one is going to look?" said College freshman Jen Rosen.
Though the efficacy of Fisher Fine Arts' backpack policy is similar to Van Pelt's backpack policy, the similarities end there. Van Pelt's policy is actually the exact opposite, indicating that Van Pelt values its books far more than its appearance. But we didn't have to look to Van Pelt's backpack policy to figure that one out.