Tips on Personal Security

To help avoid becoming a victim of a crime when you are out and about or at work, always be aware of your safety. Be proactive and plan what you would do if you were to encounter an assault. Take a Rape Aggression Defense, women's self-defense class, offered once a semester on campus.

Safety while out & about

  • Always be alert and aware of your surroundings and of the people around you. Make eye contact with people when walking. Do not be easily distracted or take your eyes off of some you feel looks suspicious in a possibly dangerous situation.
  • Always carry ID and enough cash with you in case you need to make a phone call or call a taxi.
  • Whenever possible buddy-up to walk out to dark parking lots, if it feels unsafe walk back to campus and ask for an escort. Always inform family or friends if you are traveling give them itinerary dates and locations you will visit.
  • When walking or running try to stay away from the brush or trees. Always be prepared to run away and scream.
  • If a stranger approaches offering a ride, turn and go in the opposite direction of the car. Write down the license plate and description of the car. If possible, take a photo with your cell phone from a safe distance and report the incident to police. Do not respond to conversation from strangers on the street and never give your personal information to strangers.
  • Walk confidently, at a steady pace, and have your keys ready in your hand.
  • Avoid being on a cell phone with an iPod in your other ear unaware of your surroundings, this makes you an easy target.
  • Avoid dangerous places at night time, visit them during day time hours.
  • If you feel unsafe entering an area, stop and look around. You may want to return at a different time.
  • Avoid isolated bus stops. If not possible continuously look all around you.
  • Stand away from curb until the bus arrives. If a stranger in a car approaches offering a ride, move away from the bench and be ready to run in the opposite direction. Don't stay in the same spot and make yourself an easy target.
  • Don't open you purse or wallet while boarding the bus; have your fare ready.
  • Keep flashy jewelry out of sight.
  • During off-hours, sit as close to the bus driver as possible.
  • If someone bothers you, tell the bus driver and change seats. If you change seats and the subject again sits next to you and touches his knee against yours, loudly tell him to STOP and not to touch you. This will alert everyone on the bus that he is trouble; most attackers do not want attention drawn to them.
  • Check your purse or wallet if someone is jostling, crowding or pushing you.
  • Never leave your purse, backpack or briefcase in plain view. Lock it up when you leave your desk or office.
  • Personal property should be marked with your driver's license number or other number.
  • Do not leave cash or valuables at office.
  • If you work alone or before/after normal business hours, keep the office door locked.
  • If you work late, try to find another worker or a security guard to walk out with you.
  • If you are getting in an elevator with another person and you do not feel comfortable with that person do not get in the elevator, take the next one. If you have to get in, stand next to the control panel so that if you are attacked, you can press the alarm and as many of the control buttons as possible.
  • Be alert for pickpockets on crowded elevators.
  • Be aware of escape routes for emergencies, and post phone numbers of the Police and Fire Departments in your cell so you do not have to fumble pushing many numbers.