Some lost items never, ever go home

Taylor Fowler, Features Editor

When something is lost on Pitt-Johnstown’s campus, its owner may never find the item again.

Police Sgt. Daniel Dunn said many misplaced items are turned in to campus police.

“We keep small items in a wooden box, and larger items are stored away in a drawer,” said Dunn.

Campus police officers receive lost items such as iPods, cell phones, and identification cards.

“Many of the items have little value except to the owner, so we try to find who that is,” said Dunn.

For identification cards, campus police officers contact students to retrieve the cards. Dunn said it is surprising how many people do not respond.

“Some of the IDs we find don’t even belong to UPJ students,” he said.

Campus police officers said some items never retrieved may belong to students attending Pennsylvania Highlands Community College.

Other lost-and-found items include keys, sunglasses and a set of Invisalign braces.

Officers hold on to lost items for a semester. At semester’s end, unclaimed possessions are donated to charities such as Goodwill.

“Sometimes we hold things for a second semester,” said Dunn. “It depends on the value of the item.”

A book located at the front desk of the Campus Police Department is used to keep track of the lost-and-found. Whoever turns in an item signs it in the book. The same process is used for when students retrieve an item.

Although campus police have an abundant lost-and-found collection, other locations on campus have lost-and-found bins as well.

The Technology Support Center has a lost-and-found box behind its front desk.

Technology Services Coordinator Ralph Miller said items left behind in computer labs are stored in a lost-and-found box.

“Generally speaking, we hold items for a while,” said Miller. “For example, we hold flash drives for the semester, and, if they’re never claimed, we dispose of them.”

If Technology Support Center employees are unable to locate a lost item’s owner, than the item is sent to campus police.

Lost-and-found collections can also be found at Owen Library and at the Wellness Center.

Library officials said they couldn’t discuss procedures without Pitt-Oakland official approval.