Staying safe on campus: Area aware

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Raqshan Khan
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Starting college is an exciting time for more than 19 million students across the United States, but the new environment combined with new responsibilities leaves many students vulnerable in potentially dangerous situations. Students are in a new place with unfamiliar buildings, streets, and people. All of these things together can create confusion and thus put you into danger. Here is a list of three tips that will help make you more aware of your new area or even an area you have been in for a while.

Pay attention to your surroundings

Exits and avenues of escape are key to escaping a dangerous situation. When you enter a new room, building, or even an area you visit regularly, make a point to notice doors or windows which you could easily exit through. Also, think of how quickly you will be able to reach these exit routes. Your avenue of escape should allow for as little hindrance as possible so you can get to the exit quickly. Avoid secluded spots on your campus such as stairwells, small alleyways, and isolated spots or move through them as quickly as possible.  

Be safety conscious at home

In order to make sure you keep your dorm or housing as safe as possible, make sure that the door remains locked when you leave and after you come home. Do not leave windows open if they are accessible and if you are alone. If you live in a house or apartment think about getting an alarm system or even just the sign from a provider. A dog can serve as a great protector and alarm system. While it is not a bad thing to be comfortable or relaxed in your home, make sure you have a plan of defense if an intruder were to make their way in.

Have others earn your trust

While you may be eager to make as many friends as possible, it is important to keep your trust on a high shelf. Be smart when going anywhere with someone you don’t know well by staying in groups.

Going to college is exciting and you want to make sure it stays that way by keeping yourself safe. Have fun and make friends, but be smart with your decisions! These tips should help you keep safe wherever you may be.

This is the second entry of my 2-part series on campus safety. Check out the first part here.


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