Classrooms in Jordan Hall are used extensively for both personal and group studying after hours, but most classroom doors are locked on Friday night and not unlocked until Monday morning, making finding space to study difficult for the weekend scholar and student.
Sophomore economics and management information systems major Brooke Robinson said she encountered this problem last weekend.
“My business group and I needed a place to practice our PowerPoint presentation, but the only rooms unlocked in Jordan were occupied,” she said. “This was very stressful to me. That presentation is a big deal. My group and I will be giving it to a funding board made up of Butler staff to ask for money to start a business.”
Robinson said she called the Butler University Police Department to see if an officer could unlock a door for her study group but was told it was against policy to unlock an unreserved room.
To reserve classrooms for social events, meetings or group studying, the office of conferences and special events requires a blue form to be filled out with the proper signatures.
In the case of classrooms in Jordan Hall on Sunday evening, it’s first-come, first-served.
“We do not allow mediated classrooms to remain unlocked at night when not in use due to past incidents of theft,” Hunter said in an email.
“Our procedure on mediated classrooms only deviates during finals to allow for additional study space.”
Hunter said his staff does not routinely unlock classrooms because keys are issued to faculty and staff based on what division they work in within the university.
“Typically during the business hours of the university, classrooms remain unlocked for various uses,” Hunter said.
Each evening janitorial staff lock all classroom doors after cleaning the rooms.
During weekends, unlocked rooms are harder to find.
Hunter said he is happy to make special arrangements and acknowledged that sometimes mistakes happen but said he tries to respect students.
“If we are locking doors and someone is studying, we will come back later to lock that classroom,” he said. “We try to honor that if it’s a combination of an outside event or a study group.”
The danger of classrooms being unlocked overnight appears to be their increased susceptibility to theft, despite more accessibility for students.
“We make special arrangements, but our procedures have been the same,” Hunter said. “If a classroom is empty, we lock it. We don’t want anything to get stolen.”