Changes in ASU’s entrance causes students frustration



Due to scheduled work that the university was having done to the guard shack and other areas, the entrance to the campus continued to change from Tullibody Drive to Ross Dunn Drive.

Kendal Manns, Editor-in-Chief

Alabama State University officials decided to change the route in which students, faculty, staff and visitors enter and exit campus for the past two weeks, leading to many students expressing frustration.
The main entrance off Tullibody Drive (formerly known as Jackson Street) has shut down for alterations to the guard shack, and anyone who comes onto campus has to go through the entrance on Ross Dunn Drive behind the Levi Watkins Learning Center.
The guard shack received several additions during the 2021-22 academic year, such as new surveillance cameras and an air conditioning unit on the inside. The newest addition currently being worked on is the lift bars for cars entering and exiting the campus.
“Personally, I don’t like how they’re changing the entrances and not making it very clear to the student body how to get a schedule on that,” said sophomore communications major Tye Roberts. “Some days it’s the Card Hall entrance and some days it’s the main entrance.”
The San Antonio, Texas native faces challenges getting to class and golf practice on time, but the entrance issues make it even harder for him to get to where he needs to go.
“Having to drive across campus wastes time, especially when you have to make it to practice on time as I do,” he said. “Being late is not something that coaches accept. So, I think being clearer with the student body would help out.”
Senior theater major, Payton Markham, experienced her own set of issues with the entrances. As an off-campus student, Markham is not always in the loop of the changes occurring on campus.
“It’s so inconvenient because I have to ride around the whole campus just to get to where I need to go,” Markham said. “If they are going to keep changing entrances, they need to have every entrance open.”
Jaciee Christian, a senior communications major, echoed Markham’s stance explaining the benefits of having more than one entrance open.
“If all the exits are open, you can get on campus quicker,” Christian said. “What if you’re in a rush or what if something is going on? You see on (football) game day it’s so packed to get off campus but if they have all of them open traffic, will flow easier.”
University Police Chief Kelvin Kendrick responded to the recent criticisms of the “one way in, one way out” entrance model, promoting campus safety above all else.
“The one way in one way out gives the university the ability to lock the campus down in case of emergency,’’ Kendrick said. “A lot of HBCUs (historically Black colleges and universities) have been under attack due to people sending in bomb threats and things of that magnitude. The easiest way for us to lock the campus down would be having a one way in and one way out exit strategy.”
In response to the communication concerns from the students, Kendrick advises students to look closely at their emails for notifications regarding changes to entry and exit on campus. He also previewed an app for students to get their information as well.
“Our Live Safe app will be available for the campus community to download for reminders of changes made to traffic flow and other things related to public safety (active shooter, weather-related emergencies, etc.),” he said.
Kendrick is confident that when the alterations are completed, things will run much more “smoothly.”