Point Park University's Student-Run Newspaper

Point Park Globe

Point Park University's Student-Run Newspaper

Point Park Globe

Point Park University's Student-Run Newspaper

Point Park Globe

Student Satisfaction survey raises red flags amid phishing email concerns

Photo by Matthew Palange
One of the personalized emails sent last week that rose phishing email concerns.

Students were wary of a recent survey last Monday, sent out via email by the office of President Chris Brussalis. The survey offered a chance to win a $50 gift card should students click its embedded link.


When clicked, the link redirects to a Student Satisfaction survey, administered by Ruffalo Noel Levitz (RNL) Satisfaction Surveys.


On their website, RNL says they “measure both the level of satisfaction and level of importance” of higher education institutions.

The current home page for PointWeb, featuring the student satisfactory inventory survey.


Chris Choncek, associate vice president of institutional research and planning, said via email, “The RNL SSI [Student Satisfaction Index] is a widely used survey tool in higher education.”


“It is a standardized instrument that has been tested and validated over time,” Choncek said.


The survey says it takes about 15 to 20 minutes to complete and asks students to rate either their satisfaction or dissatisfaction on campus-life concerns.


Questions range from general staff satisfaction, to specific questions of representation and resources for students.


What the link in the email and on PointWeb takes viewers to. (Photo by RNL)


Matthew Crane, a freshman psychology major, said, “Most of [the questions] were general, I only saw a few things that were concerns, none of which had garnered a positive satisfaction answer.”


Crane filled the survey out via the link on PointWeb’s banner. He said the email was, “a little bit suspicious.”


Choncek said the university went through several steps to ensure the survey was viewed as legitimate, from advertising it on PointWeb’s front page to including it on electronic billboard advertisements around campus.


“Rest assured that the SSI survey is legitimate and is a wonderful tool to measure student satisfaction,” Choncek said. “It has been used extensively in the past to make improvements to Point Park University for its students. We hope many students consider completing the survey.”


Some students were told to complete the survey during class time; while others chose not to complete the survey at all.


Lincoln Kosyla, freshman dance major, said he felt not enough was done to advertise the survey.


“It’s not spread around, there’s no announcements, there’s no organization being upheld,” Kosyla said. “I want to see the conditions at Point Park at a higher standard because the students are working super hard, and they deserve more and they deserve better.”


Jillian Lewandowski, freshman creative writing major, did not finish the survey because of phishing concerns.


“It took me to a weird website, so I kind of gave up on the survey,” Lewandowski said. Regarding the offer of an Amazon gift card, she did not believe that would indicate a scam email.

“I feel like it has been done before, like some professor would offer you money to do a survey or give a presentation. And I asked my other friends if they got it, and they said yeah.”


Thomas Smith, a junior acting major, stopped being concerned after IT did not send out a warning regarding the email.


“With the insistence and the constant emails of it, that lessened it for me, and the fact that we did not get a notification saying [not to] open this email, was reassuring,” Smith said. “If the university is looking for feedback in any way, shape, or form, then it is always a good idea to do it. If you have a problem with the university, these are the opportunities we have to put in feedback.”


The survey can be found online on PointWeb via a link at the top of the page. It will be open until March 29.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Point Park Globe Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *