Snooze-free zone?

According to campus security, you should think twice before napping at BCIT

Recently, Edmonton’s MacEwan University became a target for students who were caught sleeping. Twitter account @MacEwanSleeps has nearly 500 followers and dozens of photographs of students sleeping, seemingly unaware that their slumber was being captured and on the Internet for all to see.

Not on MY campus — (Courtesy of Ervin Cho)

Not on MY campus — (Courtesy of Ervin Cho)

Although, mercifully, a similar social media account hasn’t popped up at BCIT, I’m sure we’ve all seen someone with their heads bowed down, sneaking in a quick catnap. Several schools have policies against sleeping at school, and in some cases security guards have been known to kick out students who are caught sleeping.

Sarah Elliott, manager of security at BCIT, says that while there aren’t specific institute policies in regards to sleeping at school, there are municipal rules about snoozing at BCIT.

“Under the Burnaby city by-law, these buildings are specifically zoned for the purposes of education, so that specifically precludes sleeping,” Elliott told The Link. “It’s also a security issue, if a student is sleeping and they’ve got their laptop and iPhone laying around, they’re at a risk of having these items stolen. It’s also a safety issue, if a student is sleeping, we don’t know if they’re actually sleeping or if they’ve had some sort of seizure.”

According to Elliott, it’s at the discretion of security whether or not they want to wake up a sleeping student. If they are woken up, they will simply be asked to stay awake while on campus. However, there is a specific policy set in place for extended areas at school, such as the broadcast building at SE10.

[pullquote]”It’s at the discretion of security whether or not they want to wake up a sleeping student.”[/pullquote]

“We have areas that have extended access, the 24/7 access is for students for the purpose of studying and it specifically states to not be sleeping,” said Elliott. “Overnight sleeping is not allowed and if students are caught sleeping and are not properly identified then they will be asked to leave.”

Kelly Hwang is an accounting student who says that late night projects keep her on campus during the early morning hours and sometimes she has no choice but to take a nap.

“I live far from campus and my eight-class course load often keeps me on campus because we have a lot of group work to do,” explained Hwang. “It’s safer for me to try and get a few hours of sleep, rather than trying to drive all the way back home, on no sleep.”

Hwang said that she sees many people sleeping at BCIT and that there should be an area where this is designated.

“I know that whatever time it is, day or night, I always see people sleeping and see people exhausted,” said Hwang. “This is an intense campus and we don’t have the option of taking as few or as many classes as we like, as you do in a traditional university setting.”

Hwang notes that many students have work and home responsibilities and that BCIT may want to think about accommodating for those who need a place to rest.

“It would be nice if the school could set up an area with couches or somewhere where students can just relax for a few hours before their next class. “

If you do choose to nap at BCIT, always be aware of your surroundings: you never know whose watching, possibly with a camera phone in hand.

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