An Access Journey Part III: Tarleton State

In a campus environment, safety means many things. From safety officers to security cameras, from late-night shuttles to mental health services, safety for students is top of mind for many, bringing a passionate involvement and commentary from students, faculty, alumni, and parents. Creating the right level of security requires a fine balance: your plan should blend and enhance the campus experience, not hinder it.

At the very foundation of a security plan, all campuses can benefit from some level of access control—but at CBORD we know there is not a one-size-fits-all approach to implementing, expanding, and maintaining an access control program. We recently spent time with three campuses—each unique in its implementation of an access program—but all with the same goal: campus safety.

In Part I, we spent time at Northern Virginia Community College. In Part II, we visited with Kenyon College. Now in Part III, we arrive at Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas.

A Forward Focus

For Sally Lloyd, Director of Texan Card Operation at Tarleton State, it started small. Tarleton originally installed 120 readers back in the fall of 2002. A new residence hall opened in August 2015, which brings the grand total to 1,450 readers—with more on the way. "We've had a tremendous amount of growth," said Lloyd. Recent student population growth along with a two-year on-campus living requirement has fueled a residence hall construction boom on Tarleton's campus—they opened Integrity Hall in August 2015, and have plans for two more residence halls and a complete renovation of another. All of the new residence halls have MR5 locks (wired) on the public access doors and exterior doors and Allegion's AD-400 locks (wireless online) on the individual interior rooms.

New Construction & New Locks

Lloyd oversees Tarleton's CS Gold® system which includes arranging the access features for her campus. ­When asked how Tarleton prioritized which doors get electronic locks, Lloyd explained, "New construction gets new locks." Tarleton has not retrofitted any residence hall doors and still has some keyed doors, doors that Lloyd keeps an eye on—while she keeps her other eye on potential budgetary funds to install card access locks on some of the older residence hall doors.

It all adds up: 1,450 readers, 13 residence halls, 2 campus apartment complexes, a card office—but Lloyd calmly oversees everything and is continually planning for more projects involving access control.

Takeaway: The path of least resistance can still be a path to success. Starting only with new builds and rolling out access control as building projects are slated for upgrades can balance demand with budgetary and timing considerations.