University improves dorm security

The Best Access Card Swipe System, activated in the majority of all traditional halls by the housing department last week, allows students to access their dorms 24/7 and aims to protect students and their personal property.

Prior to the implementation of a new security system in all campus dorms this semester, many students had difficulty accessing all entries of their living quarters.

Because some students used props to keep side doors open, dorms were vulnerable to intruders.

Not all dorms have been activated because some, such as Truth Hall, had technical problems. Diamond/McGuinn is the only dorm in which students have not yet been issued cards.

According to Interim Housing Director Oscar Crummity, students’ access cards only work in the hall they reside in and cannot be used in all dorms. The main entrance of all traditional halls will be unlocked during the day to allow visitors and employees to enter, but at a predetermined time, only those with access cards will be able to enter side doors and the main entrance.

Crummity said the new system is beneficial because, “it gives the housing department better control access to facilities and students now have the opportunity to enter multiple entry ways.”

Students residing in campus dorms are becoming acclimated to the new system.

Tabitha Talyor, a 19-year-old resident of Truth Hall, said the new system provides more security.

“We didn’t have that much security before and anyone could find a way to enter,” said the second year pharmacy student from Atlanta.

Brittany Rice, 18, a Detroit native, who lives in Cropper Hall, disagreed.

“The card system isn’t really necessary for safety, because after a certain time, the doors were locked to keep out intruders anyway.”

Although in the past, students faced the possibility of fines for accessing side doors after a certain time, many used various objects to prop doors open, providing other students

and intruders access to the dorms.

“Students no longer have to illegally enter or prop open side doors and they are now better protected,” Crummity said.

Crummity added that there is no attached fee for lost cards, but the price shouldn’t be more than $3 in the future, which is reasonable compared to the $150 fee for lost dorm keys.

He also said one danger is the possibility of intruders using stolen cards to enter dorms.

“If a student loses their card, he or she should report it to their resident hall adviser immediately to deactivate the card and avoid illegal use by someone else.”

Some students believe the access cards will be burdensome, because the cards are additional objects for them to keep up with.

Crummity said that the cards will be easy to replace, because student’s information is downloaded onto a database and can quickly be transferred to a new card.

“I have to remember to keep up with my card now, but the new system is better, because instead of having doors propped, I can enter with my card,” said Ryan Bull, 19, a Gibbs Hall resident from Atlanta.

The housing department has many new plans for all traditional halls, but most plans take time to implement, Crummity said.

The access card system alone took the housing department 18 months to put into effect.

This semester, the housing department is planning proposals for the construction of new resident halls, the renovation of Paddyfoote and all female dorms, and the installation of cable in residence halls.

Contact Ebonie Ledbetter at