The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

New high-tech post office encounters glitches

Photo by Ari Ismail for The Lafayette
The new post office system utilizes kiosks and lockers for package pickup.

The recently renovated Lafayette College Post Office, located in the basement of Farinon College Center, now offers a streamlined package pick-up service as well as a new mail system. The changes have received positive reception, but students have noticed several bugs in the system.

“I like the new system and that it helps to get rid of some of the traffic,” Rebekah Lazar ’26 said. “I think there are some still kinks that it needs to work out for me to feel more comfortable with it.”

Mailboxes have been replaced with lockers accessible by a kiosk in the post office. On the kiosks, students either type in a code that was emailed to them or scan a QR code which then opens the locker where their package was placed. Lazar specifically noticed issues with the QR codes.

“It’s been not scanning,” Lazar said of the QR codes. “The locker won’t open, but it’ll say your package has been picked up.”

Images of packages piling up outside of the lockers have also circulated around campus.

“I don’t know what they were doing there,” Kendall Shaw ’26 said of the packages she saw in a pile in the post office.

David Bargowski, the head clerk at the post office, said that his staff is “learning kind of along with” the new system.

“There’s always bumps, I mean, they literally just brought [the kiosks] and put them online a week or so before the students came back,” Bargowski said.

Students’ packages have been piling up outside of the new post office lockers. (Photo courtesy of Cate Cheng ’25)

Geoff Labe, the assistant vice president of business services, also acknowledged issues with the locker-opening technology and the overwhelming amount of packages being received.

According to Labe, the changes to the post office reflect how students are receiving more packages and less mail. Labe said that nationwide, “mail is down significantly, and package volume is up significantly.”

“[It] is still kind of a hybrid system,” David Bargowski, head clerk of the post office, said. According to Bargowski, over-sized packages can be picked up at the post office window. Post office employees additionally assist students with package pickup from the lockers.

Labe added that, for those still receiving mail, instead of using P.O. boxes, “you come to the front window [of the post office], and you can ask for your mail there.”

Bargowski hopes that the new package system will allow students to pick up packages after hours and increase efficiency.

“It was pretty straightforward,” Eurnett Christopher ’25 said of the new system. She lamented the decrease in social interaction, stating that students attend college “to make interactions,” and criticized the college’s trend of automating operations.

Labe added that the post office renovation is part of a larger project to incorporate Printing and Copy Services into the post office location over the winter break period. Printing and Copy Services allows students to print posters, business cards and large documents, is currently located in the basement of Marquis Hall and is not widely used or known by students, according to Labe. Labe hopes moving the Print Center to Farinon will encourage students to take advantage of this service more.

“I think, overall, the feedback has been really positive,” Labe said. “I think like any new system … there’s kinks and we’ve been able to work them out pretty quickly … We want to hear feedback. So if something’s working great, we’d love to get that email. And if something needs our attention, we’d love to get that email as well so we can fix it quickly.”

Students can email [email protected] with questions and concerns.

Trebor Maitin ‘24 contributed reporting.

Correction 09/28/2023: A previous version of this article misspelled the first name of Kendall Shaw ’26 as “Kendal.”

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Ari Ismail
Ari Ismail, Staff Photographer

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