PNC likely unscathed after protest
Several groups protest PNC's presence on campus
Published: Monday, September 3, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, September 4, 2012 20:09
Last week, several local groups such as Students for the Environment, Occupy Delaware, Sierra Club of Delaware and Equat convened at Trabant Student Center to protest the university’s use of PNC bank. According to the student groups, PNC bank finances companies that partake in mountaintop removal coalmining, an environmentally destructive process.
Though the protesters were able to get their message out to a lot of students, it does not seem likely that many will listen. The fact that the university has a partnership with PNC already would make switching banks a hassle. All ATMs that are actually on the campus are PNC bank ATMs. This means that if a student were to switch, they would have to pay a surcharge or go seek out an ATM from their new bank, two things that no one wants to be bothered to do. The actual process of switching banks is not the simplest thing either. It takes time and free time is unfortunately very hard to come by for many college students.
Further, it is tough to turn your back on a bank because of a company they finance. The job of a bank is to provide people with loans. Generally, a bank does not discriminate as long as the company is not conducting illegal operations and their credit rating is favorable. It is hard to come down on PNC for loaning to people who take part in mountaintop removal coalmining. The bank is always going to do what is the best business move for them.
Though it is understandable why some students feel this way about this issue, it just is not plausible to think that many students will boycott the bank. There is nothing that can be done about the banks presence here in the immediate future as they have a contract with the university, so for as long as that contract exists, PNC will hold a monopoly on bank convenience. For college students who are trying to manage their small amount of time as well as possible, convenience trumps all.