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Articles: Security

Karen Bitar is a partner in the litigation department of Seyfarth Shaw LLP.

Allegations of sex abuse, once hidden from public view at universities, are seeing the light of day at record levels. That attention leads to inevitable questions: How can a school conduct the required investigation when a complaint is made, and deal with victim concerns that schools turn a blind eye to their needs?

A new documentary is sparking calls for reform on campuses across the country for humanizing a topic that is too often conveyed in the media as a set of statistics.

The Hunting Ground features interviews with numerous campus sexual assault survivors who tell of their frustration with getting justice from a system that often protects perpetrators.

Aradhana Bela Sood is a senior professor for child mental health policy and professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine.

Aradhana Bela Sood's new book on the Virginia Tech massacre highlights what can be done to better treat people who are struggling emotionally. Sood, a senior professor for child mental health policy at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, says threat assessment and treating students quickly are keys.

University of Maryland and the University of Minnesota have eliminated race from some suspect descriptions in crime alerts.

Race has been eliminated from some suspect descriptions included in crime alerts sent out by two major public universities.

University of Maryland and the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities made the change after minorities on campus raised concerns about profiling. Police agreed that descriptions limited to race did little to help track down suspects.

Colleges and universities balance questions of safety and discrimination when asking about criminal histories on applications.

In an era where many campus security efforts are being amplified, some schools are relaxing certain policies around prospective students’ criminal backgrounds.

John Bostwick formerly worked in Harvard University’s central administration as a writer and developer of financial policy.

It’s no secret that higher education is an increasingly global endeavor. Besides sending a significant number of students to participate in study abroad programs, colleges and universities also engage in research projects, collaborations and countless other international activities.

Marc C. Whitt is associate vice president for public relations at Eastern Kentucky University.

Crisis communications management is often a reactive measure. But the most effective public relations managers are those who are proactive. These tips can help as you develop a proactive crisis communications plan.

The roster of people flowing in and out of campus buildings changes frequently. New students come in, others graduate. Adjunct faculty and visiting scholars join the campus for a limited time; corporate partners and parents stop over for a day. Giving everyone access is a challenge that’s compounded when a mix of security systems have been installed independently.

Tabletop emergency exercises are part of the drill for Greencastle, Ind., Police Chief Tom Sutherlin and DePauw University Director of Public Safety Angela Nally. They met in August for an exercise at the Emergency Operations Center in Greencastle.

Cooperation between college and local police is expanding--police at many institutions now run through emergency drills with their local counterparts and some schools have seen their officers’ jurisdiction expanded into surrounding communities. Sexual assaults, however, remain a major concern.

Many people question why campus police would need a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protection vehicle like the ones pictured here. (Photo: Creative Commons: U.S. Navy)

One of the more enduring images from the recent protests in Ferguson, Mo., was that of armored military vehicles rolling down the streets of the city. But many have been surprised to learn that this equipment is also showing up on college campuses.

Colleges and universities across the country are poised to lose more than credibility if they don’t comply with sexual assault regulations and policies.

At Dartmouth University’s national sexual assault summit in July, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education Catherine E. Lhamon spoke bluntly.

Paula V. Smith is a professor of English and director of the Purposeful Risk Engagement Project at Grinnell College in Iowa.

Is enterprise risk management worth the effort? What’s gained by evaluating top risks across an entire college or university?

A recent survey of 921 higher education leaders found a “conflicted” attitude toward comprehensive risk programs. Academic leaders say that ERM is an institutional priority, yet many of them don’t follow through. At Grinnell, we examined risks across the institution and found these seven methods of ERM can help a campus learn to engage with risk in productive and creative ways.

Proposed revisions to the Clery Act aim to give colleges and universities a more clear, centralized set of regulations to prevent and investigate sexual assault on campus. The amendments focus on the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act, changes that were made to the Clery Act in 2013.

The U.S. Department of Education is proposing that institutions be required to:

Doug Karpp is vice president at Hiscox USA, a specialist insurer, and is responsible for Hiscox’s crime book.

Higher education is big business, but many schools are operating with barely more fiscal security than the average kid’s lemonade stand.

Thefts from colleges are persistent, increasing and coming from all around campus. Common targets for embezzlers include bookstores and cafeterias, tuition collection, and even government grants to professors. Administrators should implement a proactive risk management program that includes checks and balances in the accounting department, regular audits of invoices and other fraud prevention techniques.

Students of Dallas County Community College District can access the individual website for each of its seven colleges via the system’s app to find news, photos and social media activity. The app helps cut down on the number of incoming calls to various campus offices.

With apps now a fixture on the vast majority of campuses, colleges and universities are no longer debating whether to develop their own mobile platforms. Instead, they are creating the next generation of apps for students who turn to their smartphones for everything from checking their grades to checking their laundry.

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