The University of Georgia (UGA) is a top-rated public university in the United States. Recently UGA overhauled building security, implementing the Security Center platform to monitor 250 doors and 100 video cameras across two main campuses.
When universities create a safe learning environment, next-generation leaders can thrive. With an enrollment totaling over 36,000 students, the University of Georgia (UGA) in the United States knows this well. This top-rated public university invests in technologies that help its police department secure six campuses while remaining mostly out-of-sight. No matter the incident, officers respond quickly. This reinforces a strong sense of safety and ensures students are focused on what matters—getting good grades and enjoying campus life.
Keeping hundreds of buildings secure on a 762-acre main campus and five remote campuses isn’t a simple task. It became even more difficult for UGA when an older proprietary access control system began failing. Repairs were getting costly as the solution neared the end of its lifecycle. UGA wanted more flexibility with controlling doors and the ability to accommodate different requests and schedules. They also wanted a solution that could easily integrate with many devices and systems, and scale across all campuses.
“We’re always looking to provide better security for students and staff, but our goal is to make it as unintrusive as possible. With Security Center, we’re doing just that.”
Jeffrey Swindle, Lead Access Control Systems Administrator , UGA
So far, UGA has converted 10 buildings on the main campus in Athens, and another 8 buildings at the Griffin campus, just a few hours away. UGA kept existing readers by using the Synergis™ Cloud Link, an intelligent IP controller that supports non-proprietary access control hardware. Upon completion, UGA is aiming to have over 1000 cameras, 1600 door readers and 400 users on the Security Center platform.
Securing the university buildings is a team effort at UGA. While the campus police department responds to alarms, facility managers handle day-to-day administrative tasks. Facility managers can change cardholder privileges and receive automated reports to see who’s been accessing the building. Facility managers have also been empowered to oversee their unique building schedules with a unique Schedule Management Plugin.
Unified map view of the campus
According to Swindle, “Now, when there’s an alarm, our dispatchers can see the live video of the event, and quickly locate the incident on the map interface to direct responding officers.”
Simplified response procedures
Using the Threat Levels feature, UGA planned response workflows for different situations. If an incident occurs, the system will immediately adapt to help responders follow procedures.
Easy door schedule management
“It’s now easier for facility managers to set weekly building schedules months in advance, and make exceptions for academic events and holidays,” said Swindle.
Adapted to HR processes
As soon as the human resource team inputs an employee’s termination date in the HR system data feed, Security Center automatically deactivates the cardholder per UGA policy.