University Safety: Michigan State University Makes Security Changes One Year Later

Green Spartan luminaries

University safety was under the spotlight as Spartans at Michigan State University huddled around campus landmarks on February 13th, 2024. Together, they gathered in healing, sorrow, and remembrance of the devastating mass shooting on campus one year ago. The MSU campus illuminated green with Spartan lanterns during a moment of silence to mourn and honor the lives lost that day.

The most recent campus shootings at Michigan State University and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) are forcing institutions of higher learning to reevaluate current safety measures and take action to increase campus security.

University Safety Improvements

Following the February 2023 attack that left three dead and five critically injured, MSU announced its plan to expand campus safety measures. The proposed safety improvements focus on four key areas. Classroom and door locks, building access, camera coverage expansion, and mandatory training are the focus of this safety project. MSU Vice President for Public Safety and Chief of Police Marlon Lynch acknowledged the urgency for change. He commented, “…we’re constantly evaluating improvements and changes — seen and unseen — that strengthen safety on campus.” Many of these new safety features are already in place, while a few are still in progress.

Classroom and Door Locks

Across campus, 1,300 classroom doors will be equipped with a lock system for securing rooms in an emergency. Dana Whyte, MSU police and public safety spokesperson spoke candidly regarding the immediate need to reinforce security. Whyte shared, “…most classrooms will be getting typical thumb turn locks that will be able to be locked from inside the classroom, something not available at Berkey Hall last year.”

Building Access

The university quickly implemented a keycard entry system in most buildings on the East Lansing campus. From 6:00 pm until 7:30 am, only current students, faculty, and staff members with a keycard can access these facilities. Restricting access to these spaces helps ensure that only authorized individuals can enter campus buildings during non-peak hours.

Camera Coverage Expansion

Additional cameras are being added to MSU’s expansive camera network, providing more thorough coverage across campus. MSU Police and Public Safety are also moving forward with plans to centralize the oversight of all cameras and security systems. As of January, 82% of the new camera systems have been installed.

Mandatory Training

As of fall 2023, MSU requires all students, faculty, and staff to complete active violence intruder training. The online or in-person training program explains how to respond during an active violence situation. It also includes knowledge checkpoint questions to evaluate comprehension of the material.

Final Thoughts

Over the past year, Michigan State University has made significant progress in putting new campus safety upgrades in place. From physical deterrents like door locks and keycard entry to increased awareness through camera surveillance and safety training, MSU is working towards creating a safer campus.

Although The LockOut Co has no affiliation with the ongoing safety improvement project at Michigan State University, we applaud MSU’s commitment to increasing awareness and preparedness amongst students, faculty, and staff. This article was intended to cover project updates and keep community members informed. Our team shares its deepest condolences with the Michigan State University community and offers our support in furthering campus safety efforts.

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