KEEPING CAMPUS SAFE
While most of our faculty and staff have begun working from home, some have stayed behind. Their job is to keep campus safe and clean. When the students, faculty and staff return to campus, they hope you only notice that facility projects have advanced.
“We’re trying to keep the campus going while everyone else is away,” says Scott Williams, superintendent of facilities and project management.
Custodians cleaned buildings in the days after most of campus went home. Now, they are wiping down entryways and labs with disinfectant. Custodians are on a rotating schedule with minimal time to high-risk workers to maintain their safety.
“I’m really proud of our group. They’re coming to work everyday with a positive attitude, and they’re ready to work” Williams says. “We’ll continue to do this as long as they allow us to. Hopefully, we’ll be able to bring more and more people back to campus.”
Maintenance has also remained on campus. Projects include the new Desalvo-Callais Convergence Media Center and Ameen Art Gallery in Talbot Hall. Williams says construction will begin on the Barker Hall Expansion Project soon, too.
“We’re trying to limit our focus to essential projects,” Williams says. “We want to work to move the university forward but we also want to be safe, as well.”
Police officers also remain on campus to enforce the rules set on campus by the administration.
“The police department acts as a support unit during a pandemic of this kind,” Chief Craig Jacuzzo says.
That means focusing on protecting the buildings on campus and other assets. It also means enforcing any gathering rules or curfews put in place.
“We track and maintain who is on campus inside of our facilities and the allotted time they are on campus,” Chief Jacuzzo says. “We act as a resource for our campus community on the latest information regarding restrictions set by the campus or state of Louisiana.”
Chief Jacuzzo says his group is also prepared to assist with crowd and traffic control should the situation become more dire and the university have to serve another function for the public such as testing or screening.
When the time comes for the rest of campus to return, it will be in part because of the hard work from facilities and UPD.
– Jacob Batte