Target Hardening the College Campus Through Stakeholder Input: Merging Community and the Security Survey

Donald Hummer, University of Massachusetts, Lowell

The traditional security survey evaluates the physical environment of a facility or area and esgablishes potential vulnerabilities to criminal activity and personal safety. When examining an institution, however, it is but part of the picture. Stuents, faculty, and staff at colleges and universities possess key information needed for administrators before a total prevention plan is established. These constituents can provide key insights into risks not disclosed by the physical inspection itself. Similarly, the input of campus constitutents can also reinforce and give greater insight into the weaknesses unveiled by the security survey. Thus, in order for a truly effective campus crime prevention policy to be implemented, the community must be part of the process.

This research examines this two-pronged approach to evaluating institutional vulnerabilities and concerns. It is a case study of how the process is undertaken, including research methodology and information flow with school administrators. Input from constituents was obtained through the administration of a randomly distributed questionnaire and results were compared to known weaknesses unveiled by the security survey. The implications of this project are discussed with emphasis placed on what the school did with these results, and what on-campus policies developed out the research.

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Updated 05/20/2006