Photo by Mike DeRosa

The Michael J. Schwartz library, located inside Rhodes Tower, requires a valid CSU ID to enter after 8 p.m.


February 9, 2016

CSU ID cards required at libraries after 8 p.m.

By Becky Raspe

Starting this semester, Cleveland State University libraries will be enforcing a rule that involves students using their ID cards to enter the buildings after 8 p.m. in an effort to secure the buildings during extended hours.

The new security measure, which went into effect for the Michael J. Schwartz Library on Jan. 19, requires a current Viking Card for students, faculty and staff to use the facilities.

The library frequently conducts student-driven surveys that ask for suggestions and feedback on its services, which is why extended hours became available last spring.

According to Glenda Thorton, director of the Michael Schwartz Library, the idea to require CSU IDs came from students as a means of keeping the facility safe during the later hours.

“At first, it started with Student Government bringing their own scanners during finals week when hours were until 2 a.m.,” Thorton said. “So, we followed this model to ensure everyone in the library [after hours] are students.”

The key cards were implemented after library staff observed a gradual drop in facility use after 10 p.m., which is typically 100 students less than the previous hour. After observing this decline, the library staff conducted a survey to discover if students were even aware that the library was open later and if so, why weren’t they using the building after hours.

“Many responses said they would use the library if there was more security,” Thorton said. “There was an expressed need, so we responded. Key card use was a logical step.”

Though the library will be enforcing students only in the facility after 8 p.m., Thorton says that at this time she hopes the library won’t turn to keycard use during other hours of operation because the communities surrounding Cleveland State use the library as well.

Public use of the library led to the staff choosing 8 p.m. as a time to begin enforcing key card access.
“Typically the community heads home [after 8 p.m.],” Thorton said. “So, we see this as a good way to balance serving the students and the public.”

Along with making the building safer for students to use during the extended hours of operation, Thorton says the use of key cards can help cut down on staff and security, which in turn can help curb expenses.
“It all boils down to the students thoughts and how safe they feel,” Thorton said. “We want to make sure the students benefit.”


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