Reslife enacts new lockout policy


Photo credit: Gage McCall

Raistlyn Lehman

A new school year brings new students, rooms and dorm policies. This year Robert Morris University issued a new policy through Residence Life, or ‘ResLife,’ about what happens when a resident forgets his or her key.

The new lockout policy states that ResLife will begin to charge residence students when they forget or loose their key. With a first-time exception, these fee’s will start out small, but grow if a student continuously forgets his or her key.

While other universities have implemented a lockout policy at their school for years, this is the first year RMU will have this policy. Ashley Haney, assistant director in the Residence Life Office, gave more insight of why RMU adopted the lockout policy.

“We did a lot of research last year after having to do over 5,000 lockouts for students… Because we had over 5,000 we thought that something’s not that right that we have this many. So we did some research on other universities to see what they do and a lot of them charge,” said Haney.

The 5,000 lockouts not only came from students who simply locked themselves out of their dorms, but also from community advisers requesting a spare key and emergency on-call responses about being locked out, Haney explained.

Haney also stated that the policy is not a way for RMU to receive more money from its students, but as a way to teach young adults to be more responsible.

“It’s more of a security thing. A lot of students will leave their doors propped open or never use their key. If your key is never used or if you leave your door unlocked at all times, RMU students sometimes may not be the only ones coming in and out of the halls,” said Haney.

While ResLife is seeing the lockout policy as a way to protect the students and teach them responsibility, the residents at RMU are interpreting the new policy differently.

“I feel that it (lockout charges) is unreasonable to charge someone for getting locked out… Just because you get locked out doesn’t mean you don’t have a key. I understand that they (ResLife) do that so that you try to remember your key more often… I feel like after a certain time, someone should have to pay a fee, like five times. But after like a second time, accidents happen,” said Rachel Basista, freshman and resident of Adams Hall.

Although Basista seemed upset with the lockout policy, Anthony Richards, Yorktown resident, seemed fine with the new rule.

“It doesn’t really bother me at all,” said Richards, “I’m a fairly responsible individual and if I do manage to get locked out, I have my roommate.”

The cost of the lockouts will be as follows:

First time – free; second time – $5; third time – $10; fourth time – $20, fifth time – $25 and proof that resident still has the key in possession.

Photo credit: Gage McCall

For more information about the lockout policy and all other policies for residence living at RMU, visit the Residence Life website.