UIC Rave Guardian is a free, downloadable campus safety application for smart phones that’s fully accessible to anyone with a UIC ID. It’s a companion app to the UIC ALERT system, a separate notification service launched in the spring that is used to reach students and employees quickly during campus emergencies.
Both services are products of Rave Mobile Safety, a leading creator and innovator of data, communication and safety software. UIC Rave Guardian is powered by Smart911, a national database used by safety personnel and emergency responders.
“I think this is a real opportunity for students to be afforded an extra level of security when they’re on campus,” said Michael Landek, executive associate vice chancellor for administrative services. “It’s a unique product in the personal safety industry.”
The application will also add a “major avenue for interactivity,” noted Sandeep Dath, director of technology for administrative services. “We felt we needed to empower our campus community.”
The UIC Rave Guardian app has four core features:
Connect with Guardians: add trusted friends, family or campus police as contacts for direct communication or group messaging that goes to your app’s inbox. Guardians can track your location, get notifications if you don’t check in on the app and receive alerts.
Set a safety timer: set a status and timer to alert your guardians if you’re alone, feel unsafe or make a trip to an unfamiliar place. Users can deactivate the timer when they’re safe, but guardians are notified if the timer expires. The app cannot track users or access their phone’s location unless location tracking is manually allowed.
Make emergency calls and send text tips: call campus police and dial 911 from the app, or send tips — in a text and with photos — to the police if you witness any suspicious activity.
Create a Smart911 Safety Profile: users include information that they want UIC Police dispatchers and first responders to know in case of an emergency, such as medical conditions, disabilities, allergies or medication being taken.
Those who have a UIC email address will have total access to the service, but parents, friends and other guardians who are not directly affiliated with the university can still download the app, be marked as guardians and receive alerts from the application.
The UIC Rave Guardian app is available on iTunes and Google Play and is compatible with iOS (7.0 or later) and Android devices (4.0.3 and up). Members of the UIC community should sign up with their UIC email ID.
Students, staff and faculty are still strongly encouraged to sign up for UIC ALERT messages to take full advantage of the university’s safety services.
All active UIC emails are automatically enrolled in UIC ALERT, but users can subscribe to receive notifications via SMS and other wireless emails that are not UIC email addresses.
Annual re-enrollment for UIC ALERT is no longer required.
“We can’t emphasize the importance of signing up for this alert system,” Landek said.
“It takes a few minutes and it makes an important difference.”