Before you arrive on campus, we want you to know about safety and security on the Mountain. Most folks walk around the beautiful campus and Domain and don’t think much about safety and security, because we feel safe, which is great! But we still want you to know that there is a thoughtful collection of people, technologies, and procedures that are here to support you.
Specifically, we want you to know your safety resources, know how to get help, know how the University will communicate with you in an emergency, and know what you can do to prepare before you arrive.
Your personal safety and security is important to us, and we have a variety of emergency resources available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week while students are on campus. We have a local hospital and emergency room and fire department, whose response times are remarkably quick. These are all coordinated through the Sewanee dispatch center and our campus police. Many of these resources are already close by and in person, but you need to know how to access them in a moment of need.
Know how to get help
Once you arrive, we’ll introduce you to a team of, well...fun and thoughtful folks committed to support you. The faculty and staff of Sewanee are often the best resource for help. Another resource is Sewanee’s mobile safety app, Live Safe. Before you arrive on campus download LiveSafe. It’s FREE. Having this app on your device places an invaluable personal safety tool in your pocket or backpack.
Here’s how LiveSafe works.
The app has 5 primary features:
- Share information: This is a way to report information directly to our campus dispatch. They are available 24/7 and receive information directly. Information can be submitted anonymously, if you prefer. Once tips are received, the dispatcher can also text back and forth with you about the information. Again, if you want it to remain anonymous, then you have control over it, even when texting back and forth.
- We offer a map to help newcomers or visitors know where they’re going. The map also has important safety features, like the locations of AED devices, call boxes, building names, the hospital, and police department.
- Emergency Options: To connect with emergency services, use the app. It allows you to call 9-1-1 directly, or if you’re not sure that it’s an emergency you can also text them using the app. As soon as you use the device, the dispatcher will know your GPS location and identity, unless you toggle the anonymous switch at the bottom.
- Resources: This is the University’s emergency information, and it provides instructions on how to respond to emergency situations. Then all of this information is in your device for easy reference when you need it.
- SafeWalk: The last feature is called SafeWalk. It allows you to connect with a friend in your contacts and have them watch you walk home. It uses the same GPS technology and it allows you to connect with that friends, if you need anything.
How do we communicate with you?
We use a variety of communication tools to notify our community about threats or concerns. We have a voice siren, which allows us to project voice messages across campus. The siren is only used for immediate threats, like tornado warnings when we want you to shelter immediately in place. We’ll also send you a text via the LiveSafe app, and the police will send you an email message.
Transparency is an important part of being a safe community. At times you may receive a timely warning from the police department. Warnings might come when the weather threatens our safety or if a crime has happened OR even worst, if a crime is happening right now, and right near you. While we aim to send you timely information, we need you to be ready to receive it and to be thoughtful in what you do after you receive it. When a warning reads, “take shelter” then we expect you to “take shelter” and to encourage others around you to do the same.
So before you arrive, download the app. Take a look at some of the emergency procedures. Then, get ready to be a trustworthy, engaged, and thoughtful Sewanee citizen.
- Travel with purpose and confidence. Make eye contact with passersby and keep a firm hold on your property.
- Travel in groups whenever possible, especially after dark.
- Do not wear earphones (at least not in both ears) while walking or jogging.
- Stay alert. Take note of all vehicles and people in your vicinity.
- Avoid isolated or dark areas.
- Know the location of emergency phones.
- Know the phone number to the Sewanee Police Department: 931.598.1111.
- Use the Safe Walk option on the Live Safe application.
- Helpful contact numbers.
- Do not prop open exterior doors.
- Always lock your door when you leave, even if leaving for only a few minutes. Most campus theft is reported from unlocked dorm rooms.
- Always lock your door when you sleep.
- When accessing a building using an electronic key card or code, do not allow strangers to enter with you under your card or code. Any authorized person should have their own card or code.
- Know your neighbors or coworkers. It will allow you to determine if someone is "out of place."
- Get involved in campus safety. If you see someone or something that you consider suspicious, immediately contact the Sewanee Police Department at 931.598.1111.
Protecting Personal Property
- Keep your vehicle locked. Store all valuable items in the trunk out of sight.
- Coats, backpacks, purses, laptops, and books should remain with you or be locked up.
- It's also a good idea to personalize popular items with your name or initials to prevent mix-ups.
- Register your bicycle! Many bicycles are "borrowed" and then left some place other than where they started out; the Police Department can return found bicycles to their owner if they have been registered.
- Use a steel cable when locking your bike to bike racks.
- Keep a log of all high end items and their serial numbers. (i.e.: laptops and cameras)