Heads Down: Campus Visibility At Night

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Ever walked through campus at night? Perhaps you have night classes, study late at the library, or attend on-campus events. If so, you might have thoughts regarding campus visibility. The Knight News asked Queens College students about this topic.

Queens College offers nighttime and weekend programs. The Adult Collegiate Education program especially advises older students in areas like sociology, psychology, and the liberal arts. The class times accommodate students who work or have children. The accelerated bachelor’s degree program is for high school graduates over the age of 25. Some courses might run until 9:30 PM. More street lamps would promote student safety, no matter their situation.

In the survey, multiple students brought up the Quad and Cooperman Plaza. In warmer weather, the vast lawns hold Club Days and other student organization events. At night, students might not see fallen tree branches from the various trees around the lawns. Sophomore anthropology major Grayson Alonso said, “It’s easy to misstep.”

However, some parts of campus are well-lit. The Main Gate pathway, G Building, King Hall, and Rathaus Hall all received good feedback. Near the Aaron Copland School of Music, students noted dimmer lights, as some could not easily see the sidewalk. Senior English major Allison Haller noted Parking Lot 6’s lack of visibility.

Since her first year, Haller has driven to campus. Sometimes, she thinks she will miss a step while walking. However, due to poor lighting, she struggles to see other cars’ locations, and might not see oncoming traffic until the last second. This can be troublesome. She noted her temporary solution was, “I basically know my way around and rely more on my memory.”

To access Queens Hall, students walk through Gate 6 and down a small pathway. The area passes near P.S. 219 Paul Klapper, as students have to step off campus to get to Queens Hall. Students reported an inability to see the ground, with one student stating they were fearful of tripping on tree branches as the path has trees along it.

Students also noted darkness between the library and The Summit dorms. Some on-campus residents supported the claim. The library stays open from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM on weekdays, and many of them and commuting students utilize the spaces for group activities and study spaces. Residential students have the right to a safe campus just as much as commuter students.

Students provided nighttime safety tips in the survey. Multiple students brought up walking with friends while Junior dual Pre-Med and English major Sadia Joya reminded students to ‘stay vigilant.’ First-year student William Kao suggested a flashlight, as you can create your own pathway of light. However, it doesn’t all have to be done by yourself. QC offers a few on-campus resources for safety walking around campus, whether it be during someone’s walk or for help afterwards.

The Office of Health Services is located on Freese Hall’s third floor, and offers a variety of free and walk-in services, such as first aid. On Freese Hall’s first floor, students can find the Counseling Center where trained therapists hold free and confidential mental health sessions. Students can call Public Safety in an emergency, as they are active on campus 24/7. QC also contains twenty blue emergency phones scattered around campus.

To contact Public Safety if you feel unsafe for any reason, you can call 718-997-5912.

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