The robbery of a Troy student last month has spurred a security analysis of the campus, according to Dean of Student Services Herbert Reeves.
“We’re putting together basically a comprehensive review of campus safety and security,” Reeves said. “We’re going to look at everything from staffing to lighting to CCTV (closed-circuit surveillance video) to training to programming.”
The analysis is not complete, but the work has already begun.
“We’ve identified five places that were extremely dark,” Reeves said. “Those include the parking lot up behind the Phi Mu House, the lower Wallace lot (the area in which the armed robbery took place), the faculty/staff gated lot behind the school of nursing, and then right just at the intersection of Luther and University where they’re doing the demolition of Sartain.”
Reeves explained that temporary lighting has been placed in these “obvious dark spots,” but permanent lighting fixtures or upgrades will soon take the place of the portable lights.
In addition to the university’s security analysis, the SGA will also hold its twice-yearly safety walk assessing the need for more lighting.
Gus McKenzie, a senior communication major from Monroeville and the Student Government Association president, said he looks forward to the positive changes that will come from the walk.
“Our night walk is a very important event,” McKenzie said. “The safety and upkeep of campus is very important to us because it is our home.”
In addition to the extra lighting, the university is working with contractors and Physical Plant to order and install more CCTV security cameras, including license plate recognition cameras at the entrances to campus.
“Every car that comes and goes on the campus, it snaps a picture of that license plate,” Reeves said. “If at 2:30 in the morning, we have something occur on campus, you know, we can look and see what vehicles came and went from the campus, and if we know it was a red car, we can run those license plates.”
More cameras will be placed in parking lots and in and around buildings.
“We want (students) to feel safe on campus, but we’re not immune from the same things that happen, whether it be in the City of Troy or any other college campus,” Reeves said. “We try to be a safe haven, but you’ve still got people that can come onto the campus.”
Reeves said he was hopeful the changes will make a difference.
“If we can have lighting up, we’ve got cameras, and they know that we’ve got cameras up, then people are less likely to do things,” Reeves said.