After several on-campus robberies, University of Southern Mississippi students are encouraged to be fully aware of their surroundings at all times and keep in mind various safety precautions.
The University Police Department’s (UPD) crime log indicates that a vehicle was stolen Wednesday night, and an armed robbery that occurred earlier in the semester was reported by WDAM. Students and faculty are advised to remain aware of their surroundings and use safety precautions when walking through campus, especially at night.
Make sure to walk along the many well-lit paths, and if there are any issues with lighting, report the problem on the USM website. Walk in groups, if at all possible, or call the 24-hour escort service provided by UPD. Check your surroundings frequently and listen for nearby or hurrying footsteps.
Dial UPD’s number, which can be found on the website, and be ready to call the department, if you feel unsafe. There are also 45 blue telephone poles placed around campus that have a direct connection to UPD.
“I call my mother or at least pretend that I’m on the phone while walking,” freshman Ann Marie Norris said when asked how she remains safe when walking on campus.
“I ball up my fist and try to remain as intimidating as possible,” sophomore Kathryn Verplaetse said. “I try not to stay out too late, anyway.”
Student and faculty safety is USM’s top priority. Know what route you’re going to take and remain vigilant wherever you go.