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As part of a collaborative decision between the Student Government Association and Housing and Residence Life, commuters this semester are being allowed to enter dorm halls without having to be signed in by a resident host.
The “Commuter Access Privilege” pilot program is part of an initiative that was brought to HRL in the fall of 2013 by some commuter students. The program makes it possible for full time commuters to file a request that will allow them to swipe into dorm halls any time Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. without their friend being present to sign them in.
To be approved for this privilege, commuters had to complete an online application that covers the stipulations and explains what is expected of them. In addition, they had to have their Seton Hall bill paid. The requests were available to students during the add/drop period.
Tara Hart, director of Housing and Residence Life, said work was done on the program this summer to ensure that the pilot was launched at the beginning of the fall 2014 semester and has been going well.
“Thus far it has been received positively and HRL is monitoring the program and has agreed with SGA to meet in the mid/ late semester to evaluate,” said Hart, “then HRL will make a decision regarding the continuation in the spring 2015.” Modifications will be made, if the program is continued.
According to Hart, just over 200 commuters requested the privilege.
Freshman Matt Lapolla, who has a friend that was approved for the program, said that the program is a better alternative than having to always be there to sign his friend in, but he wishes the period was extended.
“I think the one improvement they can make is to extend the time from 4:30 to like 8:30. I think 4:30 is too early to end it,” Lapolla said. “Another thing is that if you forget to sign in regularly at 4:30, you lose the benefits immediately. I think you should get more than one chance.”
Sophomore Matt Boscia, a commuter, had similar sentiments saying that the program makes living off campus and having friends on campus a lot easier but it does have minor setbacks.
“I can now see my friends without the hassle of losing my ID and the time constraint of waiting to be checked in.” Boscia said. “Although the time restriction of checking at 4:30 can be tedious, I still think the program makes visiting friends a lot easier.”
Eric Hostettler can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.