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Dance company petitions for card access to Linsey Sports Center

Dancers from the Adagio Dance Company are petitioning for card swipe access to the Linsey Sports Center. The petition was created by Brooke Granovsky ’18, one of the co-presidents of Adagio. As of Thursday night, the petition has 118 signatures.

Dancers from many different clubs use the four multi-purpose rooms in Linsey for dance rehearsals and do not have direct access to the building. Rather, dancers need to walk across the basketball courts to enter Linsey, which sometimes means walking through active basketball, volleyball and soccer games or tournaments.

“It would be better for all involved if dancers could enter at Linsey, which is the entrance beside the fitness multipurpose rooms that at least 15 Brandeis dance clubs use,” states the petition.

This “disrupts play and is dangerous for both the players and the dancers. Dancers also often have to walk behind soccer nets during active games, which is a severe hazard,” the petition reads.

“Dancers should have direct access to Linsey because it is a main rehearsal space where a student may be going multiple times a week,” said Susannah Miller ’19, a member of the Adagio Dance Company. “It’s unsafe to have to walk through active sport courts to access the studios and inconveniences the athletes too,” she continued.

Adagio is suggesting a few members of each dance club should have card access to Linsey to limit the amount of people who can enter the building, said Granovsky. No students have card access to the building, except specific student employees at certain times of the day, according to Tom Rand, the Senior Associate Athletic Director of Athletics.

Athletics and Public Safety are not comfortable granting the general campus community access to doors that are not staffed because they cannot guarantee students are not bringing in unauthorized people, said Rand. The athletics facilities are only intended for current Brandeis students, faculty, staff, alumni and family members who have purchased memberships.

“For safety, security and liability reasons all guests must enter the main entrance and sign a waiver of liability and assumption of risk,” said Rand. There have been incidents in the past of students sneaking in people who do not attend Brandeis, claimed Rand, who also noted that Gosman staff frequently find people in the gym who do not belong there, such as local high school students, Bentley and Boston College students and people from the community. If these people get injured in the Brandeis gyms, the university could be held liable.

Rand also voiced concern over unauthorized people who have committed larceny, vandalism and harassment in the gyms. “If we start giving people access to doors that aren’t staffed, I feel like we are only asking for more issues.”

There are 28 different student clubs that are using Linsey this week as well as exercise and physical education classes and varsity strength and conditioning sessions. Swimmers and the varsity swim team also use the building.

“I’m sure everyone involved in all of those groups would like to enter the Linsey doors rather than coming in the main entrance. Even if you only grant 1-2 people access from each group that is still A LOT of people,” stated Rand. There would also be no way to monitor all these people or a way to track which students join or quit clubs. “I don’t think Public Safety would want to constantly be granting and removing card access.”

The only way to allow students to gain access to Linsey would be to have someone staff the entrance, which the Athletics Department does not have the budget for, noted Rand.

If dance clubs wanted to fund a staff member to monitor the Linsey entrance, clubs could use their Allocations Board funding to staff someone at the entrance at specific times and days, said Rand. The cost of hiring an employee would by $11-12 per hour. Additionally, Public Safety would have to activate the current card reader, as it is not activated right now. Dancers are exploring routes they could take to fund this student staff member, according to Granovsky.

Several students and alumni have expressed their support of the petition. Eunice Choe ’17, co-president of Adagio for two years, claimed that, “our dance companies use the facilities every single day, and I think only one incidence of getting hit in the head or unintentionally interrupting a tournament should be enough to initiate a policy change.”

“From volunteering to teach dance to children at schools, to attracting the best Boston-area dance groups to its performances, the Brandeis dance community brings exceptional value to the Brandeis campus, and it’s about time it gets the consideration it deserves,” stated Choe.

“It would have helped us a lot to have card access to Linsey because it is such an important building to the dance community at Brandeis. It doesn’t make sense to not give dancers access,” said Saumya Datta ’19, one of the captains of Chak De!, the Bollywood fusion dance team.

Granovsky and other dancers are still in contact with Rand and are planning to have a formal discussion with him in the upcoming weeks.

Editor-in-Chief Hannah Schuster, Senior Copy Editor Sarah Terrazano and Features Editor Polina Potochevska are members of Adagio Dance Company.

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