Staying Safe on Campuses Across the US

Staying Safe on Campuses across the United States
Tips to ensure your safety whenever you’re coming, going, or staying on a U.S. campus


From exams and papers to jobs and friends, university students have enough to worry about without having to be concerned about staying safe on campus. But no matter whether they live on campus or off, safety is an issue for every student.

Because campus crimes often mirror the crime in the surrounding area, it’s possible to get an idea about a university’s crime rate based on its size and location. But problems exist on every campus, whether it’s in an urban location, a rural one, or anywhere in between. Federal law requires all colleges and universities to report their crime statistics. To get an idea of how your institution rates, check out its Web site for this information.

Every institution takes some safety measures, and many campuses have their own security or police force. But ultimately, your personal safety is up to you. Students should take precautions and be educated on how to prevent crime.
Follow these tips to ensure your safety whenever you’re coming, going, or staying on campus:

  • Know the emergency and non-emergency numbers for the campus security office and/or police department.
  • Take advantage of any seminars on crime prevention and education that your institution offers.
  • Use campus patrol or evening escort programs, which accompany students from one campus location to another.
  • Know where emergency phones are located on campus.
  • Share your schedule with your parents or friends so they know where you are and when.
  • Stay in well-lit areas at night and avoid short cuts through alleys or vacant lots.
  • Use the buddy system and walk with a friend.
  • Carry a whistle or personal protection—such as pepper spray—with you.
  • If you walk or jog for exercise, do so during the day.
  • To stay aware of your surroundings, do not wear headphones while walking.
  • Always walk quickly and confidently.
  • Never open a locked door on campus for someone you don’t know.
  • Always keep your doors locked—in the car and at home.
  • If you live in a dormitory, make sure it is secure with doors and windows that lock.
  • In your car, place valuables under a seat or in the trunk.
  • Check your backseat before entering your car.
  • If you take the bus at night, arrive at the stop just before the bus is scheduled to arrive.
  • Report a crime if you see it (or even suspicious behavior or activity).

Do Coed Dorms Fuel Sex and Drinking?

No Surprise: Coed Dorms Fuel Sex and Drinking

By LiveScience Staff

posted: 17 November 2009 08:21 am ET

It’s no secret to students that coed dorms are more fun than same-sex dorms. But they can also fuel very unhealthy behavior that might otherwise be moderated.

A new study finds university students in coed housing are 2.5 times more likely to binge drink every week. And no surprise, they’re also likely to have more sexual partners, the study found. Also, pornography use was higher among students in coed dorms.

Some 90 percent of U.S. college dorms are now coed.

More than 500 students from five college campuses around the country participated in the study. Among the results:

  • 42 percent of students in coed housing reported binge drinking on a weekly basis.
  • 18 percent of students in gender-specific housing reported binge drinking weekly.

While that doesn’t put coed housing on par with fraternity and sorority houses, the researchers note that binge drinking isn’t exclusively a “Greek problem.”

“In a time when college administrators and counselors pay a lot of attention to alcohol-related problems on their campuses, this is a call to more fully examine the influence of housing environment on student behavior,” said Jason Carroll, a study coauthor and professor of family life at Brigham Young University. BYU was not one of the participating campuses.

The findings are detailed in the Journal of American College Health.

A separate study in 2007 found that college exacerbates the innate predisposition of some young adults to become heavy alcohol users. In effect, going to college can fuel alcoholism.

In light of the finding, the natural question is whether a selection effect is in play. For example, do partiers and teetotalers sort themselves out in the housing application process?

That doesn’t appear to be the case, the researchers said in a statement today. College housing offices generally assume students prefer coed housing and give them the option to “opt out” if single-gender housing is available. Very few exercise that option.

“Most of the students who live in gender-specific housing did not request to be there; they were placed there by the university,” said Brian Willoughby, lead author of the study. Willoughby recently earned a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota and returned to BYU as a visiting professor.

A wealth of information on the study participants allowed the researchers to examine other factors that could predict binge drinking. Their statistical analysis took into account the effects of age, gender, religiosity, personality and relationship status.

“When we first identified these differences with binge drinking, we felt certain that they would be explained by selection effects,” Willoughby said. “But as we examined the data further we found that the differences remained.”

The participating campuses included two public universities in the Midwest and another on the West Coast, as well as a liberal arts college and a religious university on the East Coast.

Posted by Tom Karst at 3:52 AM 0 comments

Now 25% off all pepper spray

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US Department of Education 2006-2008 Crime on Campus Statistics

The  US Dept of Ed releases campus safety statistics online and the 2006-2008 data  can be found at

The FBI also releases campus and dorm safety data.  The 2007 Campus Crime statistics can be found via this link

Hope this information is helpful to everyone evaluating colleges this fall.

From the National Fire Protection Association

Campus and dorm fire safety tips

College students living away from home should take a few minutes to make sure they are living in a fire-safe environment. Educating students on what they can do to stay safe during the school year is important and often overlooked.

Campus fire safety tips
Download these NFPA safety tips on college safety (PDF, 1 MB).

Safety tips

  • Look for fully sprinklered housing when choosing a dorm or off-campus housing.
  • Make sure your dormitory or apartment has smoke alarms inside each bedroom, outside every sleeping area and on each level. For the best protection, all smoke alarms should be interconnected so that when one sounds they all sound.
  • Test all smoke alarms at least monthly.
  • Never remove batteries or disable the alarm.
  • Learn your building’s evacuation plan and practice all drills as if they were the real thing.
  • If you live off campus, have a fire escape plan with two ways out of every room.
  • When the smoke alarm or fire alarm sounds, get out of the building quickly and stay out.
  • During a power outage, use a flashlight.
  • Cook only where it is permitted.
  • Stay in the kitchen when cooking.
  • Cook only when you are alert, not sleepy or drowsy from medicine or alcohol.
  • Check with your local fire department for any restrictions before using a barbeque grill, fire pit, or chimenea.
  • Check your school’s rules before using electrical appliances in your room.
  • Use a surge protector for your computer and plug the protector directly into an outlet.


I find it incredible that colleges and university would hide crime statistics from the public.  Here is an excerpt of an article from the CUNY (City University of NY) Graduate Center Advocate.  Yet another example of why students need to protect themselves on campus.  There is more crime than noted in published crime statistics. And who knew NYU was the second most dangerous campus in the US??  To all you NYU students, you need to get to to stock up on pepper spray and personal alarms for self defense!

CUNY News in Brief

by Advocate Staff


Governor Paterson set to slash CUNY budget yet againGov­er­nor Pater­son set to slash CUNY bud­get yet again

Putting the Crim­i­nal Back in Crim­i­nal Justice

Hats off to the John Jay Col­lege of Crim­i­nal Jus­tice who made this month’s most sig­nif­i­cant con­tri­bu­tion to ensur­ing CUNY’s endur­ing track record of cook­ing the books. A recently released audit by the State Comptroller’s Office finds that a hand­ful of CUNY col­leges aren’t both­er­ing to report cam­pus felonies. John Jay leads the way, fail­ing to report nine­teen of twenty felonies, fol­lowed closely behind by Queens, Baruch, Hunter and Medgar Evers Col­leges, who col­lec­tively buried a whop­ping 73 per­cent of cam­pus crimes dur­ing the period under State review. Accord­ing to the Gothamist, “John Jay admin­is­tra­tors are also accused of keep­ing two sets of crime logs, one cre­ated two weeks before audi­tors arrived.”

Stu­dents, unsur­pris­ingly, were upset by the news. Speak­ing to the New York Post, John Jay sopho­more Deana Kel­ley pointed out that “I think it’s uneth­i­cal. It’s like if there’s a crime in your neigh­bor­hood, you want to know what’s going on.” A grad­u­ate stu­dent at the col­lege, Juliana Velazquez, added, “It’s shock­ing to hear you attend a criminal-justice school and there’s still crime.” Yeah, imag­ine that.

In case you were wor­ried that CUNY couldn’t care less about the safety of its stu­dents, uni­ver­sity spokesman Michael Arena reas­sured any­one who’d lis­ten that the col­leges were tak­ing con­certed action to rem­edy the sit­u­a­tion. An emer­gency two-day train­ing ses­sion for every cam­pus secu­rity direc­tor was imme­di­ately con­vened. What, exactly, these crime-fighting pro­fes­sion­als were being trained in remains unclear, but CUNY offi­cials con­tend that the prob­lem has been mean­ing­fully addressed.

Of course, as in all things, despite CUNY’s impres­sive capac­ity for inter­nal cor­rup­tion, the uni­ver­sity once again failed to beat out New York Uni­ver­sity for top hon­ors in the city. You thought our num­bers were bad? NYU failed to account for nearly 90 per­cent of its cam­pus crime last year. When all crimes com­mit­ted in the NYU’s res­i­dency halls and class­room build­ings are tal­lied up, the school ranks as the sec­ond most dan­ger­ous cam­pus in the coun­try. And here we were think­ing those kids on Wash­ing­ton Square were just a bunch of poseurs!

Great idea from the University of Maryland

UMD will hold its annual “Nightwalk for Campus Safety” on Tuesday, November 10, from 6-7:30 p.m. The purpose of the walk is to inspect the campus for possible safety issues and to gather suggestions for the future improvements. Interested neighbors and community members are welcome to join the walk. Everyone meet at the Kirby Student Center Bus Hub at 6 p.m.

Admission Information: Free

UMD Kirby Student Center Bus Hub
UMD Campus
Duluth, MN 55812


from the Duluth News Tribune