Residence Hall Safety and Security
Safety and Security
The safety of students in the residence halls is the first and most fundamental concern of the Office of Residential Student Services staff; it should be your first priority, too. Your individual actions can have a direct impact on your safety and security and that of each student who lives in the residence halls.
The Office of Residential Student Services and each resident are partners for the safety and security of the residence halls. Each individual resident has PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITY for his or her own safety and security. The University and the Office of Residential Student Services have taken steps that contribute toward maintaining a safer and more secure environment. Staff, equipment and information resources are provided to encourage behavior that prevents dangerous situations and to assist if an emergency should occur. Despite these reasonable and good faith efforts, however, it is impossible to predict individual actions or guarantee that no unwanted acts or situations will ever occur. All the fire equipment in Union County cannot prevent a fire caused by a resident’s carelessness with a cigarette, candle or prohibited appliance. Nor can all the campus police at Kean prevent a theft when a resident has left the room door unlocked and a wallet on the dresser while he or she is away from the room. Remember, when one resident is careless, all residents may be exposed to the consequences of this carelessness!
General Safety and Security Procedures
Here are some personal safety and security suggestions:
- LOCK YOUR DOOR EACH TIME YOU LEAVE YOUR ROOM. CARRY YOUR KEYS WITH YOU AT ALL TIMES.
- Walk with friends or in a group.
- Walk in well-lighted and well-traveled areas.
- Constantly be aware of your surroundings.
- Know the location of emergency phones.
- Report suspicious persons or activity to campus police.
- Keep your room door locked.
- Carry your keys and Kean University ID with you at all times.
- Report damaged doors and locks to your community center or Resident Assistant immediately.
- Report “salespeople” or “solicitors” to your community center.
- Do not let your guests wander the building — they must be escorted at all times. Don’t leave guests unattended in your room/apartment.
- Do not prop doors open.
- Do not use fire exit doors unless it is a fire/evacuation emergency. Those who should be in the building should have keys or an access card.
- Remove valuables when you are away and during University closings.
- Keep your vehicle locked.
- Make sure personal property is covered by your own or your family’s homeowner’s or apartment dweller’s insurance policy.
The University is not responsible for loss of or damage to personal property; therefore, individual students are advised to purchase personal property insurance. Contact the Office of Residential Student Services for more information. All students are furnished a key to their apartment. Each individual is responsible for locking his or her door.
Students must enter and exit the building through the front doors only. Side exits are for emergency use only and are wired into the fire alarm system. These doors are locked for your protection.
The Office of Residential Student Services utilizes an electronic guest monitoring system in each of the residence hall security offices. This system will assist the office in managing guest information, enforcing the visitation policy and providing security services to the residential community.
The use of a guest monitoring system is expected to reduce resident host/visitor processing times and with its real-time tracking update immediately the identities and numbers of visitors in the residence hall facilities. It is a comprehensive software package for visitor management and identification tools. Features include:
- Reduced time to process visitors.
- Increased security in the residence halls.
- Production of bar code electronic guest passes and log-in information.
- Driver’s license scanner to capture and store information.
- Maintenance of frequent visitor list to reduce data entry time.
- Web-based service so that residents can pre-register guests.
Residence Hall Security Procedures for Residents
For the purposes of the Kean University visitation policy:
- A resident student is defined as a student who lives in the residence halls at Kean University.
- A resident host is defined as a student who is assigned to a residential space in a particular hall and signs in a guest or resident visitor.
- A guest is a nonresident, defined as someone who is not assigned a residential space in the residence halls at Kean University.
- A resident visitor is defined as a student who is not assigned to a residential space in the residence hall in which the resident host lives.
Violations of any desk/security policies and/or procedures will subject the violator to the following sanctions (but not necessarily in this order depending upon the severity of the violation):
- First desk/security violation: a Letter of Warning.
- Second desk/security violation: a Letter of Probation.
- Third desk/security violation: Termination of the student’s Residence Hall Contract.
The Desk Assistant will be present in the entrance of each building from 8 – 12 a.m., and a professional security officer will be present from 11 p.m. – 8 a.m. twenty-four (24) hours a day, seven (7) days a week.
- Resident students may be permitted to move freely from one residence hall to another utilizing their Cougar ID card from 8 – 12 a.m.
- Resident visitors from other halls must be signed in to the residence hall by the resident host from 12 – 8 a.m. The resident host is required to present his or her Cougar ID card to the desk security staff person. The Cougar ID cards for both the resident host and the resident visitor will be verified by the card access system. The desk security staff person will swipe each card for verification of residency. The resident visitor and resident host information will be logged into the Residence Watch software program.
- Each resident visitor will receive an electronic guest pass. When the resident visitor is ready to leave, he or she must return the pass in order to get the valid ID back. Failure to return the electronic pass will result in a $25 fine to the Resident Host.
- Resident visitors must be escorted by the resident host at all times.
- The resident host is expected to escort his or her resident visitor upon exiting the residence hall. The resident visitor must return the electronic guest pass in order to obtain his or her valid ID card.
- Resident visitors who are found to be living illegally in an apartment not assigned to him or her will be subject to disciplinary action. Guests who are found to be living illegally in the residence halls will subject their hosts to disciplinary action.
- As a result of fire safety code policies, a resident may have no more than two (2) resident visitors and/or guests at any one time or two (2) overnight guests and/or resident visitors at any one time.
- Violation of the policies and/or procedures will result in disciplinary action.
Residence Hall Security Procedures for Guests
All guests must sign in between 8 and 2:30 a.m. All guests must sign out by 3 a.m. Any student who is signed in between 3 and 8 a.m. will be considered an unscheduled overnight guest. All guests must be escorted at all times by the resident he or she is visiting. A guest may contact a resident by following these steps:
- Make arrangements prior to coming to campus to meet at the front desk at a designated time.
- Contact the resident by using the telephone box.
- Office of Residential Student Services staff members have a listing of residents’ phone numbers. If a visitor does not have a resident’s phone number, the Desk Assistant or professional security officer may call the resident for him or her. (Staff will not give out residents’ phone numbers or apartment /room numbers.)
- If contact to a room or apartment cannot be made, a guest will be denied access to the building.
Residence Hall Entry
- All guests must enter and exit the building via the front door only. Side exits are for emergency use only and are wired into the fire alarm system. These doors are locked for your protection. Residents permitting persons to enter or leave the building through windows or emergency exits will subject the apartment resident(s) to a fine of $75.00 each and disciplinary action. The same applies to residents and/or guests found propping open doors and any resident or guest caught entering the building in this manner. Repeated offenses may result in dismissal from the residence halls.
- Any guest must leave a valid photo ID such as a Driver’s License (excluding the Cougar ID card, passport, Green Card, a card possessing any monetary value whatsoever, and any other items of equal or greater value). Any resident visitor/guest caught with fake identification will be subject to disciplinary action. The fraudulent identification will be confiscated and turned over to campus police.
- Each resident is permitted a maximum of two (2) guests at any one time. All guests must leave a valid photo ID with the security desk upon entering the building. Each guest will receive an electronic guest pass. When the guest is ready to leave, he or she must return the pass in order to get the valid ID back. Failure to return the electronic pass will result in a $25.00 fine to the Resident Host.
- All guests must be signed out by 3 a.m. Failure to comply with this policy will result in disciplinary action and/or fines by the Office of Residential Student Services. Residents are responsible for making sure that their guests leave by the designated time period.
- Any guest who fails to sign out by 3 a.m. will be considered an unscheduled overnight guest. The host is responsible for following the security procedures and the guest policy. Failure to do so will result in an unscheduled overnight visit. If it is a weekend, the guest’s identification may be obtained from the Residence Hall Director via the community center or security desk. All identification not obtained will be available in the community centers.
- Each resident is permitted a maximum of two (2) guests at any one time.
Passing Your Keys or Cougar ID Card
Giving your key and/or Cougar ID Card to any person is a violation of policy. The passing of such items will subject the violator to disciplinary action including the possible termination of their Office of Residential Student Services Contract and Agreement. If found passing your key and/or ID card, guest privileges will be forfeited for that evening.
Passing of keys or Cougar ID cards will subject the violator to the following sanctions (but not necessarily in this order depending upon the severity of the violation):
- First-time violators: a $75.00 fine (payable by check or money order to Kean University within ten (10) business days) and a Warning Letter.
- Second-time violators: a $100.00 fine (payable by check or money order to Kean University within ten (10) business days) and Housing Probation.
- Third-time violators: TERMINATION of the student’s Residence Hall Contract.
Residents who pass their Cougar ID Card to other residents or guests are subject to fines, disciplinary action and possible termination of the Residence Hall Contract.
Outdoor Activity Policy
The Kean University residence halls provide housing accommodations for students for the main purpose of facilitating academic learning. A quiet and healthy living environment is required for effective study. Often residents, as well as nearby community neighbors, experience unacceptable negative effects from loud music and/or unruly behavior in the outdoor area or sports playing in the quad walkways. It is expected that the University should provide a reasonably quiet and safe study environment for the residents.
This policy has been developed to safeguard everyone’s rights and provide a reasonably quiet living environment. The primary purpose of this policy is to regulate, in accordance with University policies and Union municipal ordinances, the prohibited activities within the residence hall outdoor areas and to stipulate conditions and sanctions for violations.
To control high volume and unruly behavior in the residence hall outdoor areas during the academic year, no one will be permitted to play outdoor games, specifically football, baseball, lacrosse or field hockey, in the residence hall quad or on any roads and/or pathways adjacent to any residential facilities. These sports may be played in the University recreational facilities, athletic fields, or the grassy areas between Sozio Hall and Rogers Hall or the grassy area behind Dougall Hall. Any other sports such as Frisbee, jump rope, etc., will be allowed at the discretion of the Residence Life staff.
This policy further stipulates that when individuals are found creating high volumes and/or engaging in unruly behavior in the outdoor area after 10 p.m., they will be subject to disciplinary action and/or legal action. Please also refer to policy number 30 on page 18 as it pertains to various sports and recreational equipment that is prohibited in areas adjacent to the residential facilities.
In support of the information above as well as to ensure student safety and security within the residence hall community area, no one will be permitted to gather and remain in the quad area Dougall Hall patio, and the New Residence Hall Courtyard areas from 3 – 8 a.m. Noncompliance may result in disciplinary action and/or immediate suspension from the residence halls.
Overnight Guest Policy
The right of a student to live in reasonable privacy takes precedence over the right of his or her roommate to entertain guests in the room or apartment. In the practical application of determining when resident visitors/guests should be invited to the room, common sense and mutual respect should prevail. Those resident visitors/guests who are found to be living illegally in the residence halls will subject their hosts to disciplinary action. Residence hall students are expected to follow the Overnight Guest Policy.
All guests are expected to abide by Kean University policies and procedures. Resident hosts are responsible for the actions of their resident visitors/guests and are subject to disciplinary action if their resident visitors/guests violate University policies and/or procedures.
The University reserves the right to deny violators visitation privileges on a permanent basis. These individuals will be viewed as trespassers and are subject to arrest.
Overnight nonresident guests are permitted in the residence halls on a limited basis: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Resident hosts must complete an Overnight Guest form and receive approval for the overnight guest 24 hours in advance. Residents may obtain an Overnight Guest Application form from Community Centers or online via the Residential Student Services website.
In addition, the following procedures and conditions must be adhered to:
- A resident may have an overnight guest no more than three (3) consecutive nights or twenty (20) days during a semester.
- A guest of the halls may not be an overnight guest in the residence halls more than three (3) consecutive nights or twenty (20) days during a semester, whether with the same host or a different host each night.
- An individual guest of a particular room may not be an overnight guest in another room and/or hall more than three (3) consecutive nights or twenty (20) days during a semester.
- A resident host may have no more than two (2) overnight guests at one time.
A resident host must complete an Overnight Guest Application form at least twenty-four (24) hours in advance via the Office of Residential Student Services link through the Kean University website. Roommate/Apartment Mate Authorization forms must be completed prior to the guest being signed in. A Residence Hall Director must approve the Authorization forms prior to the guest being signed in. Failure to do so will result in the guest not being approved to remain overnight.
Resident hosts will receive a guest pass for their guest after he or she is signed in, and this pass must be presented if requested by any Residence Life/University personnel. A lost guest pass will result in a fine of $25.00 made payable to Kean University.
Guests who visit unexpectedly have a direct impact on the ability of roommates and suitemates to live comfortably in their rooms. Residents should make every effort to follow the procedures in order for their guests to have a pleasant visit.
Residents will be permitted four (4) unscheduled overnight visits over the course of the semester. Requests beyond the limit of four will not be approved and may result in a disciplinary conference.
Use of the Visiting Children Policy should be with mutual agreement of all roommate(s). In the event the roommate(s) does not consent, students and their child guest may meet in lounges or other common areas.
The following policy is in place for all guests under the age of eighteen (18):
- Guests under the age of eighteen (18) are permitted to visit before 3 a.m. in accordance with the Guest Visitation Policy and proper registration with the building’s Residence Watch sign-in procedures and the Residence Hall Director. Most guests under the age of eighteen (18) do not have proper identification. Thus, residents wishing to have visitors under the age of eighteen (18) must make arrangements with the Residence Hall Director prior to their guest’s arrival for admittance into the residence hall. Proper paperwork will need to be submitted including an Emergency Contact Information Card (this may be obtained through the Residence Hall Director). Arrangements may be made during business hours, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. in the community center located on the first floor of every residence hall.
- Guests must be at least 13 years of age or over to stay overnight in the residence halls in accordance with the Overnight Guest policy as stated on page 62. Requests must be in writing and submitted with the Overnight Guest's Form to the Residence Hall Director at least twenty-four (24) hours in advance. Proper paperwork including the Emergency Contact Information Card will need to be submitted with requests with roommate’s and suitemate’s signature. Special permission will be granted in writing to the resident by the Residence Hall Director. Please note that restrictions will apply to the number of overnights per month.
- All overnight guests must be authorized by the Residence Hall Director and approved by the roommate and/or suitemate .
- While visiting, minors must always be under the supervision of the hosting parties. Failure to adequately supervise minor guests may result in termination of housing privileges for a period of not less than one semester.
- Babysitting is not permitted in any Kean University residential facility.
All guests must abide by all Kean University, local, state and federal regulations.
The following hours have been established as quiet hours in all residence halls so that an atmosphere conducive to studying and sleeping can be maintained. Twenty-four-hour quiet hours will be in effect the last two weeks of each semester for the final exam period. It is expected that consideration for others will be exercised at all times.
Some students have different class schedules and different work hours. They may work late into the night and need to rest during the daytime. If a neighbor is resting or studying, keep the volume level down. If any resident requests that the volume level in a room or apartment be lowered, residents are requested to comply regardless of whether it is during quiet hours or not, as 24-hour courtesy hours are always in effect. Noncompliance may result in disciplinary action.
The residential complex is an experience in community living, and, as such, individual students must be aware of the ways in which their behavior affects others. This is particularly true of high volumes and other disturbances. It is expected that after 10 p.m., residents lower the volume of any stereo or television equipment so that it is not discernible. Loud music from stereo speakers, radios and the like heard outside a resident’s room or apartment, indoors or out, is strictly prohibited.
Occupants are considered residents of the Township of Union and are subject to its ordinances. Disturbances by an individual or group may result in disciplinary action as outlined in the Residence Hall Contract, and a municipal fine may be applicable.