Student discusses new 24-hour building access policy

Melissa Spencer February 2, 2017 0

With a new year comes a new semester. And with a new semester comes new ideas and policies. This year’s addition to the Elizabethtown College campus adds new policies to our old infrastructure.

As of Monday, Jan. 23, all Etown students now have access to the Hoover and Nicarry academic buildings, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Although these academic buildings, along with all of the other buildings on campus, are accessible to students on regular weekdays, Hoover and Nicarry will now also be accessible all night through a swipe-in system linked to the students’ ID Cards.

According to the Director of Campus Security Andrew Powell, Student Senate came up with the idea and discussed the functionality of this request with both Campus Security and other stake-holders, including the Faculty Assembly Leadership.

“We recognized the need for academic pursuits, and we know that some students prefer to work late at night, so we were supportive of the idea,” Powell said.

Once on board, Campus Security decided to test-trial both Hoover and Nicarry because they are the two academic buildings with the highest numbers of traditional classrooms, which they feel will benefit the entire student body as a whole.

Since the other buildings on campus are more specific and specialized toward certain majors, Campus Security felt more comfortable limiting the access of labs and the other academic buildings to just the students pursuing those majors.

“We gave consideration to the labs and other specialized equipment in buildings that are geared toward certain majors, and so, we did not want to open those buildings to all students,” Powell stated.

Of course, for students who need to access the other academic buildings and labs after hours, the policy has not changed. These students will still need approval from their department chair to use the equipment.

But in terms of Nicarry and Hoover, these classrooms and computer labs will be open on a first-come, first-served basis, honoring those students who need a quiet space to study or work on group projects at any time of day.

Although it is still early in the semester, Campus Security remains hopeful that minimal security implications will be involved with this new policy.

“Since we have implemented a sophisticated door access control system, we have a better sense of who is coming into and out of the buildings,” Powell said. “After the buildings are locked, the only people that can enter the buildings are members of the community.”

Additionally, many students are also excited about this new policy. Designed for the students with the students’ interest in mind, 24-hour building access means a guaranteed place to study and do homework, even on the latest nights.

Sophomore math education major Angela Wesneski is excited about the opportunity. “As a student who’s very busy and has some late nights, it will be really convenient for me to do work in a classroom setting,” she said.

As an English major who seems to live in Nicarry some semesters, I welcome this new policy with an open mind and a positive attitude. I appreciate all the work that Student Senate and Campus Security have done to ensure that I, along with my fellow classmates, have a place to study or collaborate on a group project when it is most convenient for us.

Personally, I will take advantage of this opportunity, in hopes that the policy will remain in place for the remainder of my time at Etown. And, I hope that you, as a student and a member of the Etown community, will too.

 

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