Customer Success Story
University of South Carolina Uses Rave Guardian to Maximize Safety
Safety for students, staff, faculty and visitors is a top concern for colleges and universities nationwide. Along with campus safety personnel, higher education institutions have implemented comprehensive safety systems, including emergency call boxes, self-defense workshops, alcohol/drug awareness classes and mobile safety apps. And for the University of South Carolina (USC), its efforts have paid off.
The university’s Columbia campus was recently named the sixth safest campus in the U.S. and the top safest campus in South Carolina, according to a recent study by an affiliate of ADT security company.
The study surveyed 6,284 colleges and universities and reviewed the number of crimes reported to the Department of Education and the FBI, comparing them to the total number of students on campus and the severity of a crime.
USC’s ranking was bolstered by its use of Rave Guardian app and its safety web page, which lists a daily crime log, crime bulletins, crime mapping and victim resources to help students, faculty and staff stay informed and take their safety into their own hands.
The university deployed Rave Guardian in 2015 to more than 40,000 students, faculty and staff at its flagship campus in Columbia. The mobile safety app connects with University Police during an emergency, keeping them instantly informed. As part of Rave Guardian, students, faculty and staff can set up their personal profiles with any medical conditions, course schedules, addresses and a campus ID photo. This in- formation assists USC Police to find and help them easier during an emergency.
“[Rave Guardian] was a significant savings for us and, obviously in a COVID world where there’s a lot of budgetary restrictions, it was going to save the university money. It just made sense to have that seamless integration with the app with all of our other mass communications.”
PUBLIC INFORMATION AND INTERNAL COMMUNICATION OFFICE
When students, faculty and staff initiate a panic call, Rave Guardian instantly connects with USC Police or local 9-1-1. If a call connects with USC Police, the app will automatically send a caller’s complete profile. It also sends GPS coordinates so USC Police will know the exact location of where a call was made. And depending on the incident, the person in need will receive assistance from USC or local police, the fire department or emergency medical personnel.
And if USC Police can’t reach someone after a call comes in, it can use Rave Guardian’s GPS coordinates and profile picture to locate that person.
Rave Guardian also features a Safety Timer, which allows students to notify others when they’re leaving a destination and approximately how long it would take them to get there. Students select “guardians,” such as friends, roommates or USC Police, to receive status and location updates while students arrive at their destinations.
It also includes confidential tip texting that allows students to communicate anonymously with USC Police. The two-way messaging feature helps them report crimes or suspicious activity discreetly through their smartphones. Confidential tip texting offers students an opportunity to report an incident without fearing retaliation from another student, as well as if they’re not emotionally prepared to do so in person or over the phone. The confidential tip text feature allows students to help protect themselves as well as the USC campus by taking a proactive role to report crimes to USC Police.
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