Residence Life Office has conducted Health and Safety checks in residential dorms. Between COVID policies and the general upkeep of dorms, room checks happen periodically in order to ensure the safety of all Mercyhurst students.
If one has not had a room check yet, here’s what can be expected: a pair of RAs will knock on your door and announce themselves. If you answer the door, the RAs will come in and conduct their brief check.
If the residents are not there, they will simply knock again before they use a master key to gain access to the room for the check. It is crucial to make sure as a resident that you have your room key with you when you leave your dorm because the RA will lock the door when they are finished inspecting your room. The RA will leave you a note telling you whether you passed or failed the room inspection.
If you are there when the RAs come, you may need to stand out in the hallway while the RA checks your room to ensure proper social distancing. The traditional room check only takes roughly three minutes, but it is vital that you cooperate with your RA in order for the whole process to go as smoothly as possible.
Willow Lapp, a sophomore Music Therapy major and RA in Baldwin Hall, says “I will say that room checks, which are specifically Health and Safety checks right now, are to check for the well-being of all of you. We check for illegal/illicit things to have on campus and in Baldwin Hall of course, but our main concern is that you are living in a safe environment. This is your current home after all,” said Lapp.
Not only do the room checks need to happen because of general cleanliness being kept through-out each dormitory, but now that COVID-19 is raging (and will continue to rage), it is especially important for everyone to keep their rooms neat, sanitary, and orderly.
Sometimes this is as simple as wiping down door handles, light switches, and other frequently touched surfaces with disinfectant. This could also mean deep-cleaning the bathroom as needed and washing your bed-sheets once every one or two weeks. Since there are dry areas on campus, it is very important to not have any alcohol or other il-legal paraphernalia in your room, even if you are of age in a dry building.
Should anything be found in your dorm, it will be confiscated, and, depending on your current number of offenses, your punishment will correlate accordingly. RAs will simply check what they have to and will never rummage through your personal belongings or impede on your privacy unnecessarily. These checks are designed to be as smooth, effective, and non-invasive as possible for all residents and RAs.
In the end, if you keep your space tidy, there is nothing to fear. Although room checks are completely necessary, there is no reason to worry as long as you take out the trash. For more information, the student handbook is available on the Mercyhurst University website.