Safety advice for the college student in your family

(Spencer Marsh/95.3 MNC)

As the end of the summer season quickly approaches, the Indiana Department of Homeland Security reminds college students to think safety as they begin the fall semester.

Students should help create a safe environment on campus by staying aware at all times. This will help to prevent crimes and other emergency situations from happening on campus. Follow these tips to encourage a comfortable, safe college experience:

In the Dorm:

  • Talk to the resident assistant or building manager/landlord to gather any important emergency information.
  • Know the rules. Don’t bring prohibited items into the building.
  • Don’t prop open doors that are supposed to remain locked.
  • Consider investing in a safe to protect valuable items and information, such as passports, social security cards and serial numbers and pictures of valuable items.
  • Know a way out in case of an emergency. Have multiple escape routes in order to be prepared.

On Campus:

  • When entering a classroom or any other building, take note of all potential exits.
  • Don’t walk alone at night. Call the campus police, campus escort or a friend for an escort.
  • Stay on top of emergency alerts by signing up for mobile campus alerts.
  • Memorize the campus emergency number or have it on speed dial.
  • Leave a copy of class and work schedules with a roommate or close friend.

Fire Prevention:

  • Make sure all items such as irons, ovens and electric hair tools are powered off and cool before leaving.
  • If candles are allowed in the building, be aware of them at all times and extinguish them when leaving the room.
  • Make sure there are smoke alarms outside of each sleeping area in the immediate vicinity of the bedrooms and on each floor of the dwelling, in accordance with Indiana state law. For more information on placement, visit
  • If smoke alarms go off while cooking, do not remove the batteries. Instead, fan out the area and open a window to remove smoke.
  • Use a surge protector for electronics.

General Tips:

  • Always lock car doors and remove all valuable items.
  • No matter where you are, know where the nearest fire extinguisher and fire alarm pull box are at all times.
  • When noticing suspicious activity, contact authorities immediately.
  • Privacy is important, even on social media. Don’t post private information that may put one at risk for predators or robbers.
  • Consider taking a self-defense class. No matter how physically fit someone is, it is important to know defensive fighting.

For more information on preparedness and tips on how to stay aware, visit

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