Student Safety at Tech

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Robert Connolly                                 
Interim Chief, Georgia Tech Police Department
www.police.gatech.edu

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Providing a safe and secure environment is a top priority for the Georgia Tech Police Department (GTPD).

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Providing a safe and secure environment is a top priority for the Georgia Tech Police Department (GTPD). GTPD delivers a full range of public safety services including: providing first response to emergencies, enforcing laws and Institute regulations, investigating criminal incidents and traffic accidents, emergency preparedness, and conducting crime awareness and prevention programs. GTPD officers have the authority to make arrests for crimes committed on any property under jurisdiction of the University System of Georgia Board of Regents. In addition, GTPD works closely with staff in Housing, Counseling Center, Women’s Resource Center and the Office of the Dean of Students.

Because Georgia Tech is located in a large, urban environment, we also work with the Atlanta Police Department every day to increase public safety around the perimeter of the campus.

How Georgia Tech Supports Student Safety:

  • Police are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
  • Counseling services are available 24-hours a day through the Georgia Tech Counseling Center. If someone is experiencing an immediate crisis, students can call the police for assistance. We will respond immediately to help prevent harm or further harm.
  • Housing staff are available 24-hours a day. All residence halls have key or secure card entry.
  • Students are required to enter emergency contact information on Buzzport. After logging in at buzzport.gatech.edu, they click on the red phone icon and enter their personal information.
  • There are more than 400 emergency “blue” phones and emergency buttons located throughout the campus. When your student presses the red button, the call goes directly to our Communications Officers, who will dispatch an officer to the exact location of the caller.  We will respond to every call even if there is no verbal response on the other line.
  • GTPD provides a range of free training and safety classes, including self-defense, sexual violence, alcohol safety and emergency preparedness. We are also available to talk with campus groups upon request.
  • Our expanded campus camera program and state-of-the-art Operations Center have been extremely beneficial in the prevention and prosecution of crimes committed on campus. We currently have cameras located at most of the entry and exit points on campus, and have the ability to access cameras within large public buildings such as the Campus Recreation Center and Clough Undergraduate Learning Commons. This allows us to observe suspicious individuals or illegal activity in real time, and use the footage to support arrests. We also use a SkyCop Mobile Surveillance Unit, which is a portable video trailer that enables us to monitor high-target areas remotely.
  • Late night transportation is available with the Stingerette after-hours shuttle service, which operating from 6 p.m. to 7 a.m. Students should program the Stingerette number (404.385.7433) into their mobile phones. This safety service is sponsored by Parking & Transportation Services.
  • Emergency alerts are delivered in a number of ways to students through GTENS (Georgia Tech Emergency Notification System). To be notified in the event of any campus-wide emergency, including severe weather, students can sign up for free through the GTPD website. The alert originates with the GTPD and will include time-sensitive information and what actions the students should take to stay safe.
  • Clery Alerts are delivered whenever the GTPD determines that a crime poses a serious or continuing threat to the campus community. The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (commonly called the Clery Act) provides specific guidance on what crimes are reported and what constitutes a Clery Alert. If a suspect has already been detained, the crime is not considered a threat to the community and no warning is sent. Clery Alerts are sent to all Georgia Tech email addresses.
  • Recent crime statistics and our Annual Safety Report are available on the GTPD website.

 

Safety Tips for Students:

The majority of crimes on campus are related to property theft, which is a direct result of property being left unattended or residences being left unsecured. Your student can help reduce the risk of being a victim of a crime by understanding and embracing recommended safety tips.

  • We encourage students to preprogram 404.894.2500 on their mobile phones. In an event of an emergency, students should call the Georgia Tech Police Department (GTPD) at 404.894.2500 from their mobile phone or 911 from a campus phone.
  • Sexual violence is a prevalent issue among college-age women and men. During their time in college, one in five women and one in 17 men experience sexual violence or misconduct. “Sexual violence” can be defined as any unwanted or nonconsensual sexual conduct, not just that which results in physical violation or harm. Georgia Tech has a comprehensive program for students, staff and faculty to learn more about prevention and to report any acts of sexual violence that may have occurred. For more information, contact a GTPD officer, staff of the Women’s Resource Center or Counseling Center, or visit www.voice.gatech.edu.
  • If not an emergency, students can contact the police multiple ways. They can call 404.894.2500, send an email, log into social media, stop a patrol officer, drop by our headquarters, or use our online notification form at www.police.gatech.edu/crimeinfo/crimeprevention.
  • To reduce the chances of becoming a crime victim, we encourage students to follow some basic rules. Be aware of your surroundings; stay alert and do not get distracted. Trust your instincts. Lock your doors and windows, and keep your keys with you at all times. Do not leave your belongings unattended, even “for a moment.” Use a bicycle lock. Keep your car clutter-free; don’t use it as a mobile storage unit. If your belongings are stolen, call GTPD immediately.  More tips are available on our website.
  • We encourage students to register the serial numbers of bicycles, laptops and other valuable property with GTPD at www.police.gatech.edu/services/property, or have us engrave them. This is a free service and will help us identify the property for its return should it be stolen.
  • If students see something suspicious, they should contact the GTPD immediately. We encourage students to report anything that feels “wrong” to them whether it be a backpack left unattended, a door propped open, or someone trying to open a series of locked doors.
  • Follow the Georgia Tech Police Department activities on Facebook, Reddit (GaTechPD) and Twitter @GaTechPD.
  • Register for Jacket Guardian, a security service for the campus that transforms mobile phones into personal safety devices. Jacket Guardian allows mobile phone users to create a personal information profile, including the upload of a picture. The profile is forwarded to first responders along with GPS location when the system is activated. The information is secure and can only be seen when the system is activated. It also provides a proactive "timer" feature that allows students to specify how long it will take to complete certain activities and sends an alert to the police if the timer expires. It is an opt-in system that enables users' profile information to appear in the Atlanta, or any, Smart911 center. Sign up for free at www.police.gatech.edu/services/jacketguardian.
  • If a suspicious or armed person demands a student’s property, we recommend complying with the request, then immediately seek police assistance.

For more information and additional safety tips or classes, visit the Georgia Tech Police Department website www.police.gatech.edu.

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Keywords
crime prevention, student safety
Status
  • Created By: Rachael Pocklington
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Jul 9, 2014 - 5:45am
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 11:16pm