The Student Government Association (SGA) held a Night Walk event where students walked in groups around campus looking for safety concerns.
According to Alex Reynolds, a junior nursing major from Dothan and vice president of legislative affairs, SGA spotted a few problem areas: the main concerns were outside Wallace Hall near where a robbery recently happened and in front of McCartha Hall.
While SGA members were looking for lighting issues, they also kept an eye out for other safety concerns, such as a loose storm drain lid off Luther Drive.
“That’s just a death trap right there,” said Samantha Osei, a freshman criminal justice major from Panama City, Florida.
Emma Turner, a senior exercise science major from Huntsville and student welfare committee chairwoman, explained how students participating in the Night Walk help identify campus safety issues.
“Night Walk is an event held by the SGA’s student welfare committee to assess areas on campus that could use additional lighting and other improvements to safety,” Turner said. “Students walk around campus in groups, which are designated specific areas on a map.
“They take pictures and describe what improvement needs to be made. Findings are uploaded to a shared document that is presented to school administration.”
Turner said the Night Walk events are important because they help SGA senators be in the shoes of concerned students.
“Night Walks are so important because they put senators on the spot intentionally looking for safety concerns,” Turner said. “We walk around campus at night in the shoes of concerned students and notice the issues that make students concerned and feel unsafe.”
Reynolds said it is SGA’s role to relay information and students’ concerns to the school’s administration.
“SGA’s role with student safety is to not only help identify the specific safety concerns on campus but also to serve as the direct link between the students and upper administration regarding students’ concerns with safety,” Reynolds said. “It is our job to present them in a respectful, constructive manner and to follow up on the proposed plan of action throughout each step.”
“We saw a lot of lighting concerns,” Reynolds said. “Dean (Herbert) Reeves can turn (those concerns) in to the Physical Plant, and it can be an easy fix.”