Megan Hazuga-

After using his card to gain access to AF, Sam Gersregen, a sophomore in the Graphics Design program, holds the door for his friends.
After using his card to gain access to Froggatt-Antrim, Sam Gersregen, a sophomore in the Graphics Design program, holds the door for his friends.

The beginning of a new year brings new people, new classes, new experiences and maybe most importantly, new rules. One of the biggest changes students are seeing this year is that they will need their Stout Blue Cards to access their dorm buildings 24/7. This is a change from years prior where the doors were unlocked for the majority of the day and only locked after a certain time at night. 

According to Dana Fritz, the Coordinator of Assignments & Summer Operations for University Housing, the decision was based on feedback that Housing received from students and parents.

We also spoke to other institutions to see how they handle building access and found that most have their residence halls locked during the year and have had them locked for several years,” wrote Dana in her email.

Dana said the main objective of the new locking system was to “have the best practices in our policies and procedures to meet the needs of students”.

Many returning residents have expressed concerns with locking themselves out in between classes or at times when no one is at the front desk.

“Students are expected to carry their Stout Blue Card with them at all times.  If students lose their card after desk hours, they can contact a roommate or floormate to let them in.  If they are not able to reach someone, students should contact the RA on duty. We ask that students do not let other students into the building if they do not know that they live there.”

Dana added that while they did not have any recurring issues that led to this decision, they did have many parents and students request for them to always have the doors locked.

The decision to keep the dorm doors locked 24/7 is a change for some students, but will just be a regular routine for the new students this year. The new students will likely have fewer problems with forgetting their ID’s as they will always need them, whereas it might take some time for returning students to remember to carry their ID’s with them at all times. As long as you’re always carrying your Stout Blue Card, you will never have to worry about not having access to your dorm.

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