Tailgating: A threat to dorm safety

Novalea Verno, Staff Writer

The term tailgating is often associated with the fun-filled days spent in the parking lot next to Robert B. Redman Stadium- cooking up food to enjoy while supporting the Huskies. For Bloomsburg students living in the on-campus dormitories, the term takes on a much more profound meaning. Now, it refers to students letting in others behind them when entering the dorms- an issue that has the potential for disaster.

For many students, it is normal to keep the door open when they see someone coming in behind them and even considered rude to let the door shut on someone. Yet those spreading awareness of this issue argue that protecting students’ safety is far more important than appearing rude.

“I know everyone thinks it’s respectful to hold the door for someone[,] but even if you as a student [know] they live there, you still shouldn’t let them in. It seems so disrespectful but it is to ensure safety,” said senior Ashley Nelson, who has been a Community Assistant (CA) for three years.

CAs have made it a priority to talk about it with students during mandatory meetings. Posters have been hung up throughout buildings warning of the danger that could come with students letting others into the building.

“We emphasize that tailgating leaves room for dangerous individuals to step foot into the dorms, which are meant to be safe living environments for students,” said sophomore Regina Wendt, who has been a CA since the fall of 2022.

Freshman Averie Engle, who lives in Elwell Hall, shared that during the fall semester, there was an incident of individuals getting into the building who should not have been there. She recounts how there were two boys she had never seen before on her floor knocking on doors. The two boys, who appeared to be students, were asking the girls on the floor if they could sign their chests for a club they were in. The CAs of the building were contacted about this issue and students were told the situation was being dealt with.

“It’s scary to think how they got into the dorm, especially since there are so many locations throughout the building you have to scan into. I know some people living on campus graduate early and are younger than 18. If they would have asked one of those students to sign them there would have been a much bigger issue at hand,” said Engle.

The issue of tailgating doesn’t end with just students. Wendt warns that even individuals who look like faculty and staff should not be let into the buildings.

“… this has happened multiple times with delivery drivers, however, since they are not Bloomsburg students, they should not have come into the building,” said Wendt.

As students continue to ignore warnings for tailgating, dormitories will continue their push for educating students on the dangers of letting people in.

A sign in Elwell Hall stresses the importance of not letting tailgating happen. (Novalea Verno)