From campus to campus, students
talk, whisper and giggle about rumors
they believe to be true.
Everyone has probably heard
of a few classic rumors circling
around hundreds of campuses across
the country. They create buzz and
excitement in college student’s minds.
The most well-known legends,
such as if a student dies, their
roommate gets straight A’s or if a
student gets hit by a campus vehicle
they get free tuition, are nothing more
than false rumors.
John Taylor, assistant director of
Protective Services, has been hearing
many spinoffs of the rumors in his 20
years at the University of Wisconsin-
“Rumors are human nature.
Everyone adds or subtracts to a story
they hear to make it more interesting
for the next person they tell it to,”
The origin of these UWSP rumors
is shrouded in mystery, and once they
are spoken, they spread like wildfire.
“Legend of the 4.0”
This legend states that if a
student’s roommate dies, then they
will receive straight A’s for the
academic semester. The straight A’s
would result in a solid 4.0.
“I don’t think it is real and if it
is, that is a dumb reason to get good
grades,” said senior Molly Cobb who
believes the rumor to be false and
UWSP Registrar Dan Kellogg has
worked in higher education for 22
years and has been at Point for eight.
He confesses he has heard the legend
of the 4.0, but is confident it is only a
“It has been around for many
years at most universities and I think
it is mentioned in a movie,” Kellogg
This, however, is true. The movie
Dead man on Campus was released in
1998 and revolves around two college
roommates going to parties and
having their grades suffer because of
it. They hear the 4.0 rumor and search
for a depressed student to move in
The fiction-based plot is probably
the foundation for the rumor.
Although widely known, there isn’t
any evidence that supports the legend
on any campus.
“The university does not grant
good grades or any academic
privileges to any student,” Kellogg
said. “Grades received are based on
the grades earned.”
Kellogg enforces academic
policies at the university and
explained that if there is a death
of a student the university provides
services to help other students,
faculty, and staff to cope.
Depending on the situation,
accommodations may be made for a
student so they can perform to the
best of their abilities. It is possible for
a student to take an incomplete grade
and finish their studies at a further
Regardless, a high GPA comes
from doing the work and there is no
easy way out.
in Free Tuition”
This typical rumor is that if a
student gets hit by bus or campus
vehicle they receive free tuition as
“If an individual is struck, they
have to make a claim and that claim
could result in money awarded, but a
student’s tuition is not automatically
paid,” said Jeff Karcher, director of
Others part of the UW-System
Administration Risk Management
department agreed that the tuition
being paid rumor is not a practice.
The myth was probably
established from a misunderstanding.
It is possible that a college student
sued a driver who hit them and
won the case, and then proceeded to
use that money for tuition, but it is
not possible for a student to simply
be granted financial compensation
without going through the legal
Even so, if a student was struck
by any vehicle, anywhere, they would
have to go through the same process
as a regular citizen.
“Anyone has the right to file a
claim,” Karcher said. Although the
situation depends on if the claim is approved and damages are awarded.
Don’t go jumping in front of any
vehicles because money will not be
placed in your hands without the
courts getting involved. Any accident
can put a person at a risk of getting
seriously injured and chances are,
if money is awarded, it wouldn’t be enough to cover the cost of tuition.
“Nelson Hall is Haunted”
It has been said that Nelson Hall
is haunted and some believe this
because it is an older building that
holds a lot of history.
Thousands of people have passed
through the doors of Nelson Hall
having lived and studied there. Due
to the buildings age, it is almost given
that some of the residents have passed
away since then.
“There may have been some
unfinished business and it is possible
that at times their presence was
felt or believed to be near,” said
Joe Konopacky, first shift custodial
supervisor for Facilities Services.
“I do not believe it is haunted
because I have had no experience
personally here. I work here early
in the morning and late at night
and never had any supernatural
encounter,” Konopacky said.
Since the building is old, many
individuals have preconceived
notions about possible hauntings.
“Like all older buildings and
institutional settings, it seems as if
human nature needs to have some
stories, myths, and tales about what
goes on in these spaces. People like
to have stories and even may lie
to experience a fright or encounter,”
Stevens Point has lost many
historical and original buildings.
Being both old and historical, Nelson
Hall is connected to the past and
seems to welcome stories and ideas
“I haven’t seen anything
personally and I’m a bit of a skeptic,
but a lot of reasonable, fully-in-
their-senses people truly believe
it’s haunted, and I trust them. So
I’m open to possibility,” said junior
Some people believe in the
notion of ghosts and supernatural
activity, but aside from a few personal experiences and stories, there is no
way to confirm the rumor but to
decide on your own.
“The best way to dispel the myth
would be to encourage people to just
go explore Nelson,” Straight said.
“The Mosaic Mural has
a single Red Tile”
Specific to UWSP and heard
mainly in the College of Natural
Resources building, this rumor again
proves to be false.
There are 286,200 tiny tiles in the
mural and all of them are colored in
shades of brown, tan and off-white.
A staff member in the Natural
Resources building thinks the
rumor may have stemmed from a
tile resembling a vest to represent
Chancellor Lee S. Dreyfus.
Dreyfus was recognized as always
wearing a red vest. Even though the
tile represents a vest in honor of
Dreyfus, the tile is brown and tan.
The mural was cleaned in the
summer of 2012 and Stacey Allen-
Bannach, the public relations
coordinator for the department
of natural resources, asked the
contractors cleaning the mural to
check for a red tile. Contractors stated
they did not see one, even near the
Whether the rumor is an
undocumented case of a student
receiving money or being awarded
good grades, an unseen ghost in
Nelson Hall, or a non-existent red
mural tile, each of the four rumor s
above have been dispelled.
Rumors may start from all
different reasons, such as media,
stories, unexplained incidents, but all
rumors grow because of one reason...
“People are social creatures and
they like to talk. That’s how rumors
start,” Taylor said.
One last thing, it has been said
that if a student kisses another student
while church bells are ringing, the
two lip-lockers will eventually get
married. No evidence supports the
theory, but if you are looking to get
wed, pucker-up and wait to smooch
on the hour.