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Exclusive: Faculty, staff who forget their campus ID card no longer need temporary badge to access buildings

Addison Annis
A security guard helps a Columbia faculty member scan their card entering the Student Center at 764 S. Wabash on Tuesday, Aug 16, 2023. With tight security rules, Columbia guards are attentive in monitoring who goes in and out of all campus buildings.

Faculty and staff who forget their campus identification card will no longer need to go to the Student Center for a temporary badge under a new policy the college is trying out, Ronald Sodini, associate vice president of security, told the Chronicle.

Sodini said security officials want to see if this will help expedite entrance to buildings and get instructors to their classes on time.

Students must still get a temporary ID from the Student Center if they do not have theirs.

For context: Temporary IDs were introduced during the pandemic, largely as a way to prevent bunching at security entrances and to support COVID-19 contact-tracing efforts. “Your ID would be a way we could look you up when contact tracing and say ‘oh you were in this building, do you remember,’” Sodini said. With contact tracing nearly in the past, Sodini added, “Now the question is, can we slowly go back to the old way of doing things.”

The college has made no additional changes thus far to building access for the fall.

Employees and students can still bring children after the college reversed a COVID-era policy last year that had restricted kids on campus. 

Children are welcome for temporary visits to most campus areas, without getting prior approval.

Instructors, staff and students do need permission to bring a child to class or to their on-campus job. Students should direct the request to their instructors. Faculty make the request of their department chair, and staff ask their supervisor. 

Go deeper: The full Children on Campus policy is on the college’s website.

What else: Sodini said students and employees may be asked to sign their child in and out but do not have to fill out a visitor access form. That form is for other guests. Several guards tried to insist that parents needed to fill out the form in the last few weeks, but Sodini said it was not required.

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About the Contributors
Ruth Johnson
Ruth Johnson, Former Creative Director
Addison Annis
Addison Annis, Director of Photography
aannis@columbiachronicle.com   Addison Annis is a junior photojournalism major, minoring in video production. She has covered politics, cultural events and Chicago protests. Annis joined the Chronicle in August 2022.   Hometown: Plymouth, Minn.