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Lost-and-found guide: campus locations, and what regularly turns up

10/05/16 - BOSTON, MA. - Lost-and-found items in the Curry Student Center and Marino Center at Northeastern University on Oct. 5, 2016. Photo by: Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University

On Sunday, Sept. 18, Rebecca Green wrapped up her three-hour tryout for club volleyball at the Marino Center and returned to the women’s locker room to collect her belongings. She opened her bag and looked in the pocket where she always stores her iPhone. It wasn’t there. She’d misplaced it in the locker room before tryouts.

Thankfully, a good Samaritan found her phone and returned it to the front desk, where Green later retrieved it, much to her relief.

“I had a feeling it would be turned in to the front desk,” said Green, SSH’19, a third-year sociology major. “I didn’t feel totally frazzled, but it was nice to feel the immediate sense of relief that it was there.”

Staff members who manage Northeastern’s various lost-and-found locations said the fall semester brings an upswing in lost items turned in—and this year is no different. “We always have a steady stream of items turned into lost-and-found, but at the beginning of the academic year it goes up because the volume of people increases on campus,” said NUPD Detective Joe Corbett.

Lost-and-found locations on campus include:

NUPD: 716 Columbus Ave.
Snell Library: Help and Information Desk on the first floor
Marino Center: First floor, 140 Marino Center
Curry Student Center: Operations desk on the third floor, though Curry’s lost-and-found will be relocated to Campus Crossroads outside the bookstore in the coming weeks

If you’re unsure of how or where to locate a lost item, contact NUPD at 617.373.3913.

Commonly turned-in items

Snell Library, the Marino Center, and the Curry Student Center all reported many of the same types of items turning up in recent weeks: Husky Cards, clothing, cellphones, chargers, glasses, and sunglasses, to name a few. Other items regularly left behind at Snell Library include jackets, umbrellas, and flash drives, while water bottles regularly turn up at Curry’s lost-and-found.

All high-value items—such as laptops, cellphones, and bicycles—go to NUPD’s lost-and-found, where they are typically held for up to a year. NUPD also collects lost Husky Cards turned in across campus. Other lost-and-found locations usually hold items for a few weeks.

NUPD and staff members keep detailed logs of all items turned in at their locations. Every attempt is made to reunite lost items with their owners, including NUPD emailing students whose lost IDs have been turned in. Unclaimed items are donated whenever possible.

Some ‘mind-blowing’ items found

Every now and then, some really distinctive items make their way through lost-and-found. For instance, NUPD is holding a copy of a video game called “Paparazzi” that was found in a residence hall in August. Many such items find their way to Curry’s lost-and-found, particularly because Curry takes the items left behind in the lockers in the university’s tunnel system, which are cleaned out at the end of each semester.

“The stuff we find in the lockers is mind-blowing,” said Adam Taylor, senior associate director of operations and events management at Curry. Items left behind in the lockers over the past year include a $5,000 camera, CB radios, and fully preserved lunches (the lunches immediately go bye-bye, of course). Other items currently in Curry’s lost-and-found include a full suitcase and a set of field hockey equipment.

Tips to help reunite you with lost items

Those who manage the lost-and-found locations also have plenty of advice for students, faculty, and staff. Personalizing common items—for example, writing your initials on your charger or flash drive—or remembering distinctive characteristics about your lost items, like knowing your cellphone screensaver, make it much easier for staff to confirm you’re an item’s rightful owner. Members of the Northeastern community can also register their laptops and bicycles with NUPD.

Snell Library staff also noted that sometimes students bring lost items over to Curry, not realizing that the library has its own lost-and-found. So if you lost something at the library and it’s not in the lost-and-found there, you may try Curry’s lost-and-found, too.

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