Personal Safety


Personal safety can be attained when an individual recognizes and works to prevent contact with hazardous people, situations, or areas. By doing this, the individual lowers their risk of injury, accidents, and damage to their person or possessions. College students especially need to pay attention to their surroundings in order to stay safe in their academic and social lives. The following are safety tips that can reduce the risk of an accident happening to you:

  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times, but especially when tired, upset or sick, or when you have been drinking, because these factors put you more at risk for an attack.
  • Take caution when taking shortcuts through isolate areas of campus.
  • Try to park and walk in well-light, populated areas.
  • Always lock the door – whether you are in your dorm, apartment, car, or a lab or classroom on campus.
  • Keep a light or a radio on in your apartment or dorm if you plan to be gone during the day and return after dark.
  • Have your keys in your hand before you leave a building if walking to your car.
  • Know the location of campus emergency telephones, and keep area emergency numbers saved in your phone.
  • Always keep your personal belongings within eyesight while on campus.
  • Notify the police if there are suspicious individuals just “hanging around,” or if you are made to feel uncomfortable by someone's words or actions.
  • Be wary of giving out your personal information such as bank account numbers and social security numbers on the phone, internet, or on paper forms.
  • Use the “buddy” system: make an agreement with a nearby friend to call or text each other on a regular basis.

Though these tips and others are good preventative measures that can keep you out of harm’s way, they do not guarantee that nothing will happen to you. If you find yourself in a compromising situation or being attacked, here are some things that you can do:

  • Always trust your instincts.
  • Try to remain calm and give yourself time to think – use your best judgment.
  • Don’t be afraid to be impolite or make a scene – that is especially important to remember if someone you know attacks you.
  • If someone tries to snatch one of your belongings, do not resist – let it go, and focus on identifying the person as best you can and go immediately to the police department – injuries in robberies occur when resistance is shown. It is best to let the police deal with the robber – don’t try to do it yourself.
  • Think ahead to possible situations and prepare a plan of what you would do if attacked.

Below is a list of resources that gives more information about personal safety and contact information for other safety resources at Auburn.

Last Updated: 7/11/2011