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Archives, Diaa Aljurdy, People

Behind the Gates

By Diaa Al-Jurdy

LAU Tribune staff

He stands tall with his grey uniform.  His white shirt illuminates the entrance of the gate while his neck-tie reflects the discipline in his eyes. A grey hat often covers his serious forehead. Standing on the campus lower, middle or upper gate, he is LAU’s security guard and he protects the campus entrance 24/7.

Of the herds of students that pass daily by LAU’s three gates, some know the security guards and communicate with them while others simply ignore their existence. Every guard has his own way in dealing with the university body, from students to instructors, and from staff to administrators.

“I have limits with students to avoid any sensitivity or problem,” Elie Arnaout, 28-year-old security guard, said. “But as security guards, we are united. I have so many friends among them.”

Arnaout said that the worst problems he faces are those related to politics on campus. Nonetheless, he explained, security guards are well-trained to deal with fights without resorting to violence.

Bilal Yassine, a 30-year-old security guard, said that elections this year were unlike any other. Security guards did not witness any fights or tension among students.

Yassine explained that two kinds of instructors exist on campus; those who ignore security guards and the more humble who greet them with “marhaba” or “good morning.” Yassine seemed more receptive to students than Arnaout. “I have limits but everyone loves me,” he said, laughing.

Mohamad Kassem, a 41-year-old security guard, clearly sets limits when it comes to relation with students. “I don’t like to be close to students,” he said.

Kassem considers that the services and income LAU offers are considerable. “ To become a security guard at LAU, you have to be lucky,” he added.

No student, instructor or staff can enter the university without passing by its gates. At every gate, a man stands there with a grey uniform and a smile that carries a million stories.

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About LAU Tribune

The official student newspaper at the Lebanese American University

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