It never hurts to be prepared
Posted Feb. 22, 2008
Following recent threats on colleges nationwide whether they be manmade threats or otherwise, the University of La Verne has followed suit in finding ways in keeping its students safe and in the know.

It seems that the disasters on campus are becoming more of a normality these days. With the Virginia Tech shootings last year and the Valentine’s Day shootings at Northern Illinois University last week, schools need to find a way of optimizing the safety of its students.

Having a warning system in place is a step in the right direction.

The National Notification Network that the University is in the process of being enrolled in may add an extra cost to the University but is well worth the cost. After all, what's should come as a top priority is providing a safer learning environment.

Notification systems have been known to be of good use in the past.

Pepperdine University effectively used the system to notify its students of the wildfire dangers when the campus was at risk not too long ago.

Being notified through text message, phone call or e-mail is effective and useful when dealing with disasters.

It is unlikely that students will be able to become aware of disasters specific to the University in a timely manner by other means.

Although having a warning system is a good step in providing a safe environment, participation is key in the success of its application.

Without adequate faculty, staff and student enrollment in this program, the warnings if any should be needed will fall on deaf ears.

What use is having a notification system if no one is willing to take part?

The “3N” system will alert students of emergencies on their cell phones. When it becomes available, everyone should register.

Personal information sold or may falling into the wrong hands should not be a concern.

The company that will collect the contact information, whether it is a cell phone number or e-mail address, will only use the information if there is a notification issued.

While shootings, bomb threats, gas leaks, fires and earthquakes are certainly a threat to the safety of students on campus, there are other uncertainties that need to be addressed as well.

For a campus to claim it cares for its students, it must have as many preventive programs and services that can be available.

ULV saw this and is now in the process of acquiring defibrillators.

There are now two defibrillator on the way for the movement sports and sciences department and there is talk of a possible third defibrillator for another department.

Why doesn’t campus safety or health services have at least one of these life-saving machines? It seems to take personal action from individual staff members to get things going.

Cardiac arrest is dangerous and immediate action needs to take place when it occurs. Having sufficient equipment and proper training is imperative in providing the safe environment that the University should strive for.

In addition to providing these services, it may also be helpful to provide disaster preparedness information on the school Web site.

The University has started providing a safer environment for its students, but more can be done. Although the warning systems and defibrillator may not be needed everyday, it would be nice to know that they are there for us when we do need them.
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