A tall and tan circular desk now sits at the entrance of the Hillsdale College Roche Sports Complex. Behind that desk sits a security employee with a scanner and a tablet, all of which are a part of an initiative to enhance the college’s security.
Associate Athletic Director for Business Management and Compliance Josh Calver said the new technology is meant to improve tracking and security.
“We’re concerned about the security of this building with so many entrances and exits. And so we’ve updated our tracking of memberships through an electronic system,” Calver said.
Now students, faculty, staff, and community members will have to show an ID card upon entrance. Right now, the system isn’t fully up and running, but Calver said it’s expected to be ready by spring 2020.
“We have things ready to roll but we’re kind of slowly working into it. Part of the struggle there is getting our staff up to speed because they work such different schedules,” he said.
One of the major issues this new system is intended to solve is getting community members to renew their memberships.
Hillsdale’s athletic website says that anyone can apply for a membership for an annual price of $300. Senior citizens (65 years or older) can get a membership for only $175. Children under the age of 18 can be added to either membership for an additional $10 per child.
“It’ll give us a better tracking on those to capture renewal timelines and things like that. We’ve kind of struggled with that in the past,” Calver said. “But it will give us a better idea of our members – who those people are and when those renewal times are coming. We’re close to 450 memberships, so there’s a lot.”
Sophomore Alanna O’Leary is in her second year of working as a fitness center employee. She said she’s heard of issues pertaining to Hillsdale community members walking in without membership passes to get a free work out.
Another security issue facing the sports complex is athletes leaving doors propped open. Often times they have practice outside of normal operating hours, so once one athlete gets in, he or she leaves the door open for the rest of the team.
New ID scanners have been installed on three of the doors leading to the sports complex for athletes and coaches to use. The scanners are programmed to only accept their ID cards, not other students, staff, or community members.
“When the door is propped, anyone can walk in,” Calver said. “With the card access on a couple different doors, we can allow coaches and athletes to get into the building outside of regular hours.”
During regular operating hours, all faculty, staff, students, and community members can be expected to scan their ID cards to gain access to anything in the sports complex, whether it’s the basketball courts, pool, or fitness center. They do not, however, need to scan to check out of the building.