Eckert: Know yourself, services that can help

I have never witnessed or been the victim of crime on campus or anywhere. Given that I’m 6’4” and started offensive and defensive line for three and a half years of high school, it’s clear I’m not someone that could be easily mugged. I feel safe most of the places I go on and off of campus. I try to stay inside or with others after dark. I don’t go to places that could be potentially dangerous. Crime prevention isn’t a one-sided thing, prevention is about stopping criminals and also practicing safer actions.

Location is a huge part of crime prevention. I’ve never gone anywhere unsafe or even potentially dangerous alone. I always stayed with other people or adults. Crime can happen anywhere, to anyone, but it’s much less likely to happen to a group of people. Keeping friends around or even walking closely to another group of people could be a great way to prevent a crime.

The resources that campus provides are also a great way to stay safe and prevent crimes. With Safe Ride, Greenies and campus security it’s easy to get home late at night if you feel unsafe. I’ve never used any of these resources but from what I’ve heard from friends they work pretty well. Coming home from the library late at night, many of my friends will call Safe Ride to drop them off in front of their dorms. Other friends travel to the library and other study spots in groups and then walk back together if it gets too late. Again this isn’t a personal experience because I primarily study in my room or the common room and don’t venture out late at night, but none of my friends have ever had a problem with crime at night.

Stay on campus. This is the most important point. Stay on campus late at night and you’ll be much safer. I realize that crime does happen on campus, but the likelihood drops and there will also be safety resources much closer by. On campus we have the blue emergency phones, campus security, and also buildings with card access that criminals can’t get into. These methods aren’t fool-proof, but there’s no way to lower the campus crime rate to zero because that’s just not realistic. Crime is, unfortunately, a part of life. The only thing to do is practice safe actions and help raise awareness. Stay safe.

Brian Eckert is a first-year student who is living on campus.