4 Universities Making An Effort to Keep Their Campus Safe

Written by | Updated October 17, 2013

Although all students know where to go on college campuses to get meals and academic resources, not all of them know where to get safety help. To combat this issue, many institutions created websites for students to have easy access to myriad of services available to them on campus.

While the safety resources available on campuses differ from school to school, the following campuses have safety programs that encompass different aspects of safety.

1. Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins
Campus security at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD, is always in a state of upgrading and expanding. The university recently invested millions of dollars in its security programs. The fully-commissioned campus police department has increased patrolling on and off campus with their own police officers, contracted guards and off-duty Baltimore police. The patrolling is done on foot, bike, Segway, vehicles and club cars.

The university has 129 regular closed-circuit cameras and added 186 on and around campus “smart” closed-circuit television cameras that monitor what is happening within their field of view and alert human monitors to potentially dangerous or suspicious activities.

The upgraded network of 113 emergency blue light telephones work in conjunction with many of the smart cameras. This allows operators who answer the emergency phones to move the cameras to view the area when a phone is accessed. When a student pushes a button on the emergency phones, a blue light is activated, an alarm is sounded, and the caller is put in immediate contact with the safety and security department.

Campus safety and security has a student volunteer system called Hopkins Emergency Response Organization (HERO). HERO volunteers are certified first responders or EMTs who are qualified to administer emergency medical treatments. The department also holds weekly evening neighborhood security walks with students through residence halls and Greek organizations to help students learn more about the areas as well as “streetwise” precautions. Safety education starts at freshman orientation and continues all through a student’s enrollment with free security inspections, classes, ride-along patrols and information sessions.

2. Bowdoin College

Bowdoin College
Bowdoin College in Brunswick, ME, is a safe campus within a safe community and the college takes nothing for granted when it comes to its security.  Bowdoin College’s Office of Safety and Security operates with security officers who patrol 24 hours a day in vehicles, on foot and on bicycles. The office also provides free shuttle transportation on campus and within a one-mile radius of campus to deter the campus community from walking alone after dark. For students who experience a real or perceived threat on campus, there are many blue light emergency phones that offer immediate assistance from campus security.

At Bowdoin College, they don’t think safety is exclusively geared toward crime and accidents. The college also believes in keeping students safe from disease and illnesses. The school’s health services department provides flu vaccines, condoms, and free testing for HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases. 

3. Brigham Young University

safe campuses
Brigham Young University in Provo, UT, has an on-campus police department that is fully certified by the Utah Department of Public safety. The university police department works closely with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to ensure the safety of the campus community. As part of its initiative to prevent crime and maintain a safe campus community, the university police department hosts numerous safety sessions for students, faculty and staff each year.

To combat the presence of sexual assault on campus, each fall and winter the university offers health education/physical education (HEPE) classes, aimed at raising awareness and prevention on the issue. In addition to the annual HEPE classes, BYU offers a Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) course to instruct female members of the campus community awareness, prevention, rape avoidance and risk reduction through hands-on self-defense training. Each fall semester, the university police host seminars about personal safety and crime prevention and awareness; there are three presentations for men and three for women.

The university has COPS (Comply, Observe, Police, Safety) Robbery Prevention program that arms members of the campus community the knowledge to safely act to an armed robber. BYU also offers a Safe-walk program that provides on-campus escorts to ensure safety of students who utilize the campus after hours.

4. University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh

safe campuses
University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh University Police Department works in conjunction with a Campus Safety Team and its Community Service Officer (CSO) Program. The Campus Safety Team is a team of volunteers who assist the police department in emergency situations. The Community Service Officer Program is a program that utilizes student employees who are trained to patrol campus, provide nightly security in residence halls and serve as police dispatchers. The community service officers also serve as campus escorts through the university’s Safe Walk program, which provides free escorts through campus during night hours.

The university police department offers crime prevention programs ranging from alcohol abuse awareness, domestic abuse prevention, gang awareness and hate crime prevention. To drive the point home about the seriousness of alcohol consumption by underage students, the university police department performs “mock busts” in dormitories. These busts offer students a glimpse into what a real bust entails and offers students an opportunity to have questions answered by the police department.

In the event of a real or perceived emergency, the TitanAlert system notifies the campus community through text messages and gives instructions about how to proceed.
These colleges and universities are making campus life safe and secure through the use of collaboration, technology and prevention systems. What is your campus doing to ensure you are safe?

Written by Nicole Tallman

Nicole is the mom to two precocious girls and is PTA President. She is passionate about the environment and leaving the Earth better than she found it. Learn more

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