4 Safe Colleges Where Rock Stars Got Smart

Written by | Updated April 16, 2014

Believe it or not, there’s more to the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle than partying, groupies and selling out huge stadiums. A number of chart toppers also hit pretty high when it comes to IQ. More rockers than you may know have attended college – from the Ivy League to state universities.

These four colleges didn’t need future Grammy winners on campus to pull out all the stops when it comes to maintaining a safe and secure environment for students, staff and faculty. Check out these four rockin’ colleges that know how to foster creativity while keeping everyone on campus safe and sound.

1. Harvard University

Harvard isn’t just for future lawyers and other usual denizens of the Ivy League. This prestigious institution also has some street cred when it comes to educating rockers like Rivers Cuomo, lead singer of the alt rock band Weezer. Cuomo’s witty lyrics, rife with cultural references and plenty of tongue-in-cheek one-liners, are a credit to his highbrow education. In addition to rock stars, Harvard also boasts eight U.S. Presidents, 150 Nobel Laureates, 335 Rhodes Scholars and 62 living billionaires among its alumni, students, faculty and staff.

With all the big brains and potential musical talent on campus, Harvard makes sure to keep these future national treasures safe and sound during their tenure at the university. The Harvard University Police Department do a job worthy of the stalwart institution they are sworn to serve and protect, with as few as 136 total criminal offenses reported in 2012 – an impressive number when there are nearly 21,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students matriculating at the Massachusetts university.

2. Georgia State University

Situated in downtown Atlanta, Georgia State University has grown from a technical night school into a leading public research university that has had its share of success stories, including 16 NCAA teams and more than 50 nationally and internationally ranked programs. It’s no surprise that this urban college appealed to rapper Ludacris, who attended with a major in business. No doubt his education has helped him become a master of industry with his various businesses including Disturbing tha Peace records and Conjure Cognac liquor.

As an urban college, security and safety are top priorities for Georgia State. The dedicated officers of the Georgia State University Police Department work hard to keep the 32,000 current students and nearly 5,000 faculty and staff members safe from harm. In 2012, the campus was murder and arson-free for the third year in a row. Programs like the Panther Ambassadors, which provides nightly safety escorts for faculty, staff and students, add to the overall security of the Georgia State campus.

3. University of California – Los Angeles

This public research university isn’t new to the spotlight, being so close to the lights and cameras of Hollywood. But UCLA has more claims to fame than its appearance in multiple films, including “Old School,” “Erin Brockovich” and “Legally Blonde.” In fact, even though film might be what attracted a young Jim Morrison to the university, it was music that launched his legendary career as front man for The Doors. There’s no doubt that Morrison’s flair for the dramatic played a role in his musical expression, thanks to the film degree he earned before becoming an enduring cultural icon.

There’s plenty going on backstage at this well-known university, including a stellar campus safety program that keeps film crews as well as students, staff and faculty secure 24/7. UCLA takes a holistic approach to campus safety, incorporating traditional policing with emergency management and environmental and health safety. To help the college community engage in campus security, the UCLA Police Department offers crime prevention programs each quarter that address personal safety, sexual assault awareness and prevention, hate crimes and drug and alcohol awareness.

4. College of Staten Island

One thing rock stars never cease to do is surprise us, reminding us that there’s more to a rock god than onstage antics, wild costumes and (sometimes) a famous tongue. That’s right, KISS bassist Gene Simmons is an educated man, having attended Richmond College, which is known today as College of Staten Island. And there’s no doubt this raucous rocker has put his smarts to work managing his multiple businesses and keeping his love-to-hate-him persona in the limelight.

Maybe it’s having survived the likes of Simmons that prepared the Office of Public Safety at the College of Staten Island to become a stanchion of safety and security for its 204-acre New York City campus. This alcohol-free campus is startlingly devoid of criminal activity, having less than 10 total crimes reported in 2012.

Do you know where your favorite rock star went to college?

Image: chensiyuan

Written by Rebecca Edwards

Rebecca has honed her safety and security skills as both a single mom and a college director. Being responsible for the well-being of others helped her learn how to minimize risk and create safe environments. Learn more

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