Blanton and Rauch install security cameras inside side doors


Photo by James Tananan Kamnuedkhun

A dorm hall side door propped open, allowing someone to enter from the outside.
Photo illustration by James Tananan Kamnuedkhun


Blanton and Rauch Memorial Hall are installing security cameras in the stairwells inside the side doors.

Friday, Sept. 27, Area Co-ordinator Terrell Jones sent an email to residents of these dorms to warn them that cameras will monitor the side doors and those caught entering through the side doors or propping them open will be written up.   

“It should be understood that leaving these side doors propped open can create an unsafe environment for those you share this community with,” the email from Jones said.

Dr. Terry Russell, director of residential life, said the cameras have already been installed except in Blanton, where they should be in place “fairly quickly.”

Russell said side doors are for exiting only.  A resident caught breaking side door policy will be given a warning on their first offense, and consequences for later offenses can include a dismissal or community service.

“We just really want to ensure the safety of the buildings,” he said.

Rauch resident Sydney Zavola said she thinks the cameras are unnecessary because the co-ed dorm has 24/7 visitation and people mostly use the side doors to carry things in if they don’t want to walk to another door.

Zavola said people usually only prop them open for a few minutes, but she understands why it can be a safety problem when people forget to close them.

Last year, two students found a homeless woman showering and stealing toiletries in Irwin Hall, which currently has no internal camera system set up. 

The camera system being installed in Rauch and Blanton will only be monitored when needed.

“The cameras are all on one system. They’re typically not monitored 24/7, but we monitor it when we need to”, Russell said.

News Editor Matt Hampton contributed reporting to this story.