Barry McNamara  |   Published January 27, 2022

Shining a Light on Campus Safety

Mark Grover’s behind-the-scenes work helps brighten corner of Sixth Street and East Broadway.

MARK GROVER: Campus Safety officer stands next to new streetlight he helped bring to dark corner ... MARK GROVER: Campus Safety officer stands next to new streetlight he helped bring to dark corner of campus.MONMOUTH, Ill. – A corner of the Monmouth College campus is brighter – and safer – thanks to the diligent efforts of a staff member.

Few people know the details of the College’s physical layout better than Senior Security Officer Mark Grover, who has traversed Monmouth’s campus more times than he can count. The more he did so, the more he realized that a change was needed at the corner of Sixth Street and East Broadway, which is the southwest corner of campus.

“Making my regular rounds, I come upon this intersection many times per night,” said Grover. “Students frequently pass by it when coming back from town, as do many community residents both late at night and early in the morning when out for a walk or run. It’s a very dim to dark intersection and thus very dangerous.”

For years, a lone streetlight was on the southeast side of the intersection and one of the College’s security lights lit the northeast side. Together, they helped illuminate the east half of the intersection.

THAT'S BETTER: With the new streetlight in place (at left), the corner of Sixth Street and Ea... THAT'S BETTER: With the new streetlight in place (at left), the corner of Sixth Street and East Broadway is much brighter.“But the southwest and northwest corners – the west half – were extremely dark and unsafe,” said Grover. “When a person crossed that intersection on the north side, it was very hard to see them. I was concerned that someone would be hit there. I take the safety and well-being of Monmouth College students and the community very seriously.”

In November, Grover expressed his concern to Ameren, and a staff member at the power company agreed. She told Grover the protocol was to contact the City of Monmouth. In mid-December, Public Works Director Andy Jackson contacted Grover to let him know he had submitted a request to Ameren from the city for an additional street light at the intersection.

“On Dec. 27, I saw the flags being placed for marking the location,” said Grover. “Then on Jan. 12, they installed the pole and light. I was so excited. I felt it was the best gift.”

Grover said he was pleased that the process moved swiftly from his initial inquiry to a permanent solution.

“Many thanks to the city for its quick turnaround on this. I really can’t thank Andy Jackson enough for his work and for advocating to install new lighting at the intersection. The light really makes a huge difference.” Mark Grover

“Many thanks to the city for its quick turnaround on this,” he said. “I really can’t thank Andy Jackson enough for his work and for advocating to install new lighting at the intersection. The light really makes a huge difference. I’m also very happy about the way they angled the light, as it gives the best distribution of light possible.”

A few years ago, Grover advocated installing a new light fixture in the middle of the 600 block of East Detroit for those walking to and from the Monmouth campus from the College’s East Euclid Avenue parking lot.

“Many have appreciated the additional lighting, as it has made them feel more secure, not to mention allowing them to see their surroundings on a lighted pathway,” said Grover.

Monmouth Co-Dean of Students Karen Ogorzalek saluted the efforts of Grover, as well as his staff, which are often, well, not in the spotlight.

“This is a great story of the behind-the-scenes work that our Campus Safety officers do to help with the safety of our students and of them going above and beyond,” she said. “The before-and-after difference is quite impressive and will make a significant difference later this spring when more of our students are out and about.”

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