Crime never sleeps, especially on college campuses. Recently, flyers posted around campus told NSU students about an alleged assault and hit-and-run on campus. With national campus shootings and the stabbing of Florida International University student, Kendall Berry on its campus, students are more concerned than ever about how they are alerted about campus crime and emergencies such as shootings, fires and other crises. Junior marketing major, Melissa Edouard said that when she first saw the flyers about the assault and hit-and-run, she thought they were a joke.
“I don’t know if there could have been a more effective way [of alerting students of the crime],” she said. “If they did it by phone it would be a lot easier.”
Karim Foster, senior biology major, thought that the flyers were effective.
“[They] put it at the entrance of every building that people have to go into,” he said. “I’m sure pretty much everybody saw it, so I think what they did was good enough.”
Jim Lambe, assistant director of communications at Public Safety, said that NSU uses students’ e-mail addresses to inform them of campus emergencies, not crime. Lambe also said that NSU alerts students of emergencies via cell phone if their number is registered in WebSTAR.
“This is why it is so important for students to review their Emergency Notification Numbers registered in WebSTAR — not to be confused with their Emergency Contact Numbers,” he said.
NSU uses more than one way of communicating with students in case one method fails. “Even if your phone is off in class,” Lambe said, “you would have already been alerted by the classroom intercom announcement, outdoor public address system or by the building alarm or a Public Safety officer on site.”
Other colleges and universities use text messages and e-mails to warn students of crime on campus, not just emergencies. Barry University uses e-mail, a crime blog, and text messages to alert students about crime and emergencies. The University of Miami sends crime alerts through their university e-mail, Web sites and flyers. Students do not need to sign up for e-mail alerts, but do have to register their phone numbers to be alerted through cell phone text.