Commuters may get resident privileges

A program that will make it easier for commuters to enter residence halls is in the works.

Housing and Residence Life and the Student Government Association are crafting a plan whose projected pilot date is fall 2014, according to SGA treasurer and leader of this initiative Ashley Jefferson.

According to Jefferson, the unofficial commuter access program will allow commuters to swipe into dorms during certain hours without a host.

She said students would still have to leave their IDs at the front desk. At the end of the proposed time window, students would need to leave or be signed in “under the old system.”

“If you don’t check out in time and you don’t honor what we are going to put in place and put forward, it’s kind of a no-nonsense, one-and-done thing,” Jefferson said. “You’ll get your privileges revoked, whether it be for the rest of the semester, the year or whatever we decide to set.”

In order for students to be eligible for the program, they will have to sign a contract similar to the residents’ code of conduct, Jefferson said.

Jefferson said that she spoke to Housing and Resident Life administrators Director Tara Hart and Assistant Director Heath Rossner about the issue. She also asked about 15 colleges and universities about their guest policies.

“From understanding the administrators’ concerns, understanding what students want and seeing what’s already been done out there, I took a combination of the three and I proposed something to Tara Hart and her team called the commuter access program,” she said.

Freshman diplomacy major Dominique Fortes said that she is signed into Neumann Hall every day and that the process is tedious and cumbersome.

“It takes way too long,” Fortes said, “especially if the (desk assistant) knows you and sees you every day.”

Fortes said of the proposed policy, “It’d make everything easier.”

Sophomore diplomacy major Gillian Harris said her experiences of being signed into a dorm have been “efficient” but a “pain in the butt.”

“Unless it’s after (quiet) hours, I don’t see why you have to be signed in (if you’re a student),” Harris said.

The initiative was started last semester when Jefferson was not allowed to leave Xavier Hall with her ID unless her host was present.

“I was very caught off guard because… I have never once have had to get my host to sign me out,” Jefferson said.

Tiffany Do can be reached at tiffany.do@student.shu.edu.

Author: Tiffany Do

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