Harrison Hall: Safe or Not?

More stories from Becca Malachowski

Syracuse Winter Fair
February 1, 2019

If you live in Harrison or St. Mary’s, or you keep up with campus news, you’ve probably heard the animosity toward the Harrison parking lot. For those who don’t know, last year there were a couple of incidents in the parking lot where people were put in unsafe situations, including robberies. I have no quarrels with the security office here at Le Moyne. They are wonderful, attentive people who are very good at their job. I do, however, have some tips on how to make the Harrison parking lot safer for all residents of Le Moyne college.

Blue Lights are an emergency station in which one can get in direct contact with Le Moyne Security, but, as most students know, the new Blue Light by Harrison and St. Mary’s is already out of order. I was excited to see a Blue Light by these dorms when I first came back to campus, but I was shocked to find out that it is already not working. I did some research to find out more about the Blue Light system and I was surprised by some of the information. While most colleges believe that emergency lights are an important element to the safety of the campus, there are some reasons why they are becoming scarce. The price of a blue light phone is roughly $7,000 and it costs around $500 just to keep it running (Digitaltrends.com).  While most Colleges and Universities can afford this, it is still a hefty price and some security offices are asking, “Why pay for the Blue Light when no one uses them?” Although I agree with the fact that there should be Blue Lights on any campus, I also see security offices’ point. Students don’t always use the blue light because they have cell phones. Students call security directly or they have a security app on their phone, which is a route some colleges are taking. Students also have some fear of getting in trouble if they themselves have broken a campus rule. In addition, Blue Lights only work if the system has a data connection (Digitaltrends.com). This can make the Blue Light system ineffective.

Now that I’ve discussed the nature of these blue lights I can converse about parking lot tips that will make the Harrison parking lot safer. Mccue.com had three tips on how to vamp up parking lots to make them safer to everyone, including drivers.

  1.  Control the flow of traffic: controlling the traffic flow will prevent cars from driving in the wrong direction and causing an accident. This isn’t a huge problem in the Harrison parking lot but it’s always something we need to keep in mind.
  2.  Have enough lights in the parking lot, something that residents feel the parking lot is lacking. Having a well-lit parking lot helps prevent vandalism and theft as well as other violent acts.
  3.  Have enough pedestrian walkways: While there is one walkway leading back to Harrison and St. Mary’s, I wonder if there is anyway there could be another walkway installed around the parking lot, just to make the area slightly safer.


While conducting research for this article, I asked two Le Moyne students what they thought of the parking lot and ways to make it safer. Marie Knittel (’20) and Miranda Aldrich (’20) both agreed that they thought the Harrison parking lot could be safer. Marie suggested more security patrols and more street lights for the parking lot. Miranda agreed, and stated that it would help if Le Moyne had a college safety app.

The parking lot behind Harrison could use some help with safety precautions and I completely agree, but we should keep in mind that security is doing what they can and to always have your cell phone with you in that parking lot. Stay safe.