Discussing Campus Safety With Your College Student

Concern for the safety of college students has grown in light of numerous incidents and tragedies on college campuses.

Ideally, a three-way partnership will do a great deal of good in ensuring the safety of college students. Parents need to talk to their son or daughter about safety, students need to exercise awareness and behave responsibly, and colleges need to take precautions to keep students safe.

Here are a few safety tips for students transitioning into college:

  • Be aware of lighting on the campus at night and take a well lit path even if it results in a longer route.
  • Do not let an unknown individual into the residence hall.
  • Always lock dorm rooms and car doors, even if you plan to only be gone for a few minutes.
  • Know where you are going. When navigating a new location, walk with confidence and avoid looking confused.
  • Be aware of emergency phones or “blue lights” on campus and do not hesitate to use them.
  • Have the Campus Security phone number saved in your phone.
  • Share your schedule with a roommate or friend. Let them know where you will be and when you expect to return.
  • Learn how to physically defend yourself in a self-defense class and purchase safety supplies like pepper spray and/or personal alarms.
Students and parents should not be overly concerned about safety, but they should be aware and use common sense. An open conversation with your student about campus policies, your concerns, and his or her actions will help them think about safety and help you feel more secure about your student’s well-being.