Category Archives: Personal Safety & Security at College

Know How To Jump Start Your Car

College kids may find themselves stuck with a dead battery. Chances are they will be far from home, so they won’t be able to call Dad (or Mom) for quick help.
The best option is to call AAA or similar service. However, if those options are not available, everyone should know how to correctly (and safely) jump start their car. Tom and Ray from CarTalk have a great step by step guide on how to jump start your car which can be printed out and kept in the car for future reference.


Students Need To Know How To Change a Tire

As college students are heading off in their vehicles, parents should make sure they know how to change a tire in the event of a flat.

The safest option is to call AAA or similar roadside assistance company, however if those options are not available, the following article from Popular Mechanics provides some tips.

Remember, changing a tire should only be done if you know what you are doing, have the proper equipment, and can do it in a safe location.

Student Gambling at College Campuses

Gambling on college campuses is becoming a serious problem. With so many online gambling sites, as well as the proliferation of casinos around the country, it is fairly easy for a student to get in trouble.
Poker competitions are popular on television and have likely generated an increased interest in poker playing among young people. There is an excellent article by Steven Friess in the NYTimes about what college are (and are not) doing about this problem. College parents definitely need to be aware of the topic of student gambling problems.

College Campus Security & Safety – help coming from Congress?

In light of the violent incidents that have occurred on college campuses, security has become an even greater priority at colleges and universities. Security enhancements can be expensive, so colleges are looking for federal financial help to offset these costs.

Safety and security experts believe advanced alert systems, for example text messaging, is critical to providing rapid warning to alert students of imminent threats on campus.

Bills have recently been approved in both houses of Congress which would provide federal matching funds for colleges and universities to purchase emergency communication infrastructure or enhanced safety training. These items are incorporated into a larger bill addressing the postsecondary education law, which is currently being discussed in Congress.

Given the recent tragedies at universities and community colleges, campus security is a extremely visible issue, and obviously of the utmost importance to the public. However, there has been frustration among colleges and security proponents at how long it has taken Congress to approve these measures. There is a chance that Congress could take action by April. Unfortunately, any funding would not be available until next year, since the dollars would have to be approved by the congressional budget committees and signed into law by the Whitehouse.

Campus Safety and Security Resources for Parents and Students

Colleges and Universities talk the safety and security of students VERY seriously. In fact, in light of recent tragedies, many schools are adding additional safeguards, including security related staff, procedures, and technology.

The United State’s Department of Education maintains a useful website with information about campus safety and security; this site maintains information resources which may be of interest to parents of college students:
Campus Safety and Security Resources

Does your homeowners insurance cover your child’s possessions at college?

What happens if your student’s possessions are stolen or destroyed on campus ? Do you need insurance at college? or does your homeowners insurance cover your students possessions at college?
It depends on your insurance policy. You should definately check with your insurance agent.
As we saw in our earlier blog entry, valuable items can be easily stolen, including bikes, scooters, computers, etc. Unfortunately, theft on college campuses is extremely common. Parents need to alert their kids about the importance of protecting their property; plus parents also need to do a bit of homework about their insurance coverage.

Let us know your experiences regarding this important subject.

Why college students' bikes & scooters are disappearing around campuses

This video shows how easily thiefs can steal bikes on campus. The video was shot in various busy spots in New York City, although it is easy to image the same situation are any urban or rural college campus. It is amazing how passers by will not get involved. The video was put together by two brothers; the man in the video is actually ‘stealing’ his own bike to illustrate his point.

Bikes, mopeds, and scooters are expensive items, and as was illustrated in this video, are vulnerable to theifs. In future entries, we will discuss bike theft prevention tips, recommended bike locks, etc.

Information Security on Campus: ID Theft Prevention Tips for parents and college students

Identity Theft: Prevention Tips for Parents and Students

College students need to understand how to protect themselves from falling victim to identity theft and information fraud.

Many young people have a lax attitude about security. They also tend to be more trusting of others and have a casual attitude about taking precautions. Parents and young people should talk about personal information security. They should also discuss how their individual circumstances might put them at increased risk of being victimized. Although the following tips may seem obvious to experienced adults, many young people don’t follow some of the following:

-Never lend your credit card or debit card to anyone, and never share your password.

-Do not print your driver’s license number, birth date, or social security number on your checks.

-When you write a check at a store, don’t allow the store to confirm your check by writing in your credit card number.

-Do not put outbound mail in your mailbox for your postal carrier to pickup. Take your mail directly to a US postal mailbox.

-If your credit card or ATM card is lost or stolen, alert your bank/credit card issuer immediately.

-Avoid using passwords or PIN numbers that might be easy for a thief to figure out (i.e. avoid birth dates, common names, etc.)

-Shred any financial documents or anything containing sensitive information before putting them in the trash.

-Always check your credit card statement for charges you did not make.

-Order a copy of your credit report at least once per year. Look out for creditors on your statement that you never applied for.