By Sebastian Atkins-Taylor
The weekend of Friday, Feb. 6th and 7th the Darling Learning Center (DLC) will be shutting down the far end stairwells from exterior access from 11p.m. to 6a.m. This will be a permanent change for the remainder of the spring semester at Husson University.
The stairs wells are located on each end of the building on the northwest and southeast ends of the DLC. The northeast stairwell entrance is close to the parking area and the George Wildey Communication Center, commonly referred to as the NESCom building. The southeast entrance is close to the Dickerman Dining Center and Peabody Hall, a building where a large amount of classes are held, along with the Campus Center. Students will have to use the primary door at the south of the building.
“In all honesty it’s not really a big deal. The main issue is with how cold its been lately. Having to walk around in the cold is frustrating. Once warmer weather comes around it won’t be as big as a deal. In reality it’s just an inconvenience,” said Jaren Magness, a resident in the DLC.
Residential Director Dustin Ramsdell said, “We envision this change making our community more secure through our ability to more closely monitor those coming in during these high traffic times. All doors to the lobby will still be accessible at all times to DLC residents, as well as the aforementioned classroom doors/halls.”
The doors will still be accessible for exiting the building at all times. Another new change will be the unlocking of the bottom side entrances during these times. These hallways that have classrooms attached to them are usually locked off on weekends and late at night.
Some residents of the DLC don’t think this is the real reason for shutting down the side entrance doors.
A resident who asked to remain unidentified for fear of pushback from the DLC staff said, “I think they’re just trying to catch people smoking weed. I’ll find a way to still my thing. I moved to the DLC to be left alone, and treated as an adult. I think they’re just hiding behind community as an excuse.” They expressed their concerns further “I leave campus to use my medicine because I’m not allowed to do it here. When I come back I don’t want to be harassed because I smell like weed. I’m doing it legally, and don’t want to be looked at like a criminal for it by the RA’s.”
Kyle Duelly is another resident of the DLC dorm hall. He understands why the school is doing this but finds it a bit annoying. “It doesn’t really affect me too much. It’s just I live on one of the far ends of the hallways, so I have to come to the middle just to walk back down to the side I live on. When before I could just take the side stairwell and be at my room. Or when I decide I want to have a couple beers. I’m of age to drink, so are my roommates, but that doesn’t mean I want the RA’s to know when I’ve decided to have a few. It’s not really their business,” said Duelly.
Ramsdell insists that these procedures are for building a better community, along with safety and security for the residents by being able to monitor who is entering the building. He noted that these new procedures are not indented to intrude on the resident’s privacy.
The DLC won’t be the only dorm hall getting this new procedure. “This procedure will be prototyped here. It is something that is supported by the higher-ups,” said Ramsdell. “We’re going to see how it’s like having people come through the main lobby to better keep an eye on who’s coming in and out of the buildings during this high traffic times.”
Ramsdell also mentioned that if it goes well this semester Husson University may be implementing these changes in the other dorms such as Bell, Carlisle, and Hart. There is no word on when these changes will be implemented.