How GPS Tracking Is Improving College Campus Safety
After the high school graduation parties have ended and the diplomas are all handed out, many teens begin to focus on the next level of education. Most proactive teens have likely already spoken with high school guidance counselors to discuss long-term goals, as well as submit applications for acceptance to numerous colleges all across the nation before they receive their high school diplomas. However, many other teens find themselves unsure of what the next step should be, deciding instead to attend local community colleges to complete general education requirements before making a commitment to a particular university. Regardless if a teen decides to enroll at a four-year university or a local community college, campus security and personal safety are always significant concerns for both parents and educators. This is why many college campus police are turning to GPS tracking technology to assist in security and surveillance efforts.
Campus Safety Statistics & Information
Although the numbers vary from state to state and campus to campus, many campus security websites proclaim that nearly 1 out of 5 women will fall victim to some form of harassment or assault. Although that number is frightening, here are the top shocking facts about campus security and crimes:
- One in five women and one in 16 men are sexually assaulted while in college, according to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC).
- In 2019, there were 39,050 criminal incidents reported on college and university campuses in the US, including over 13,000 cases of theft and 1,800 cases of aggravated assault, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES).
- In a survey of over 27,000 college students, 70% reported experiencing some form of cyberbullying, according to a report by the Cyberbullying Research Center.
- Over half of college students have reported feeling unsafe on their campus at some point, according to a survey by College Pulse.
The sources for this information are the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC), the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the Cyberbullying Research Center, and a survey by College Pulse.
How GPS Trackers Can Enhance Security On College Campuses
The typical university has thousands of attending students, while campus police usually only have a handful of officers on duty to maintain order and security. The numbers do not favor law enforcement authorities in any way, shape, or form. However, through the use of vehicle tracking technology, campus police are able to fight unfavorable odds. This is because campus police can utilize GPS monitoring solutions for a couple of reasons that include conducting surveillance on potential campus criminals and using security products to improve communication between officers. For example, if campus police receive information suggesting a particular student is engaging in criminal activity while on college grounds, the campus officers can place a wireless GPS tracker on the vehicle of the suspect to identify what that student or individual is up to. The information gathered from the GPS monitoring system can be used to gather evidence for a potential arrest
Real-time tracking systems also offer a number of advantageous features that can help campus police improve internal operations as well as enhance overall security efforts. By equipping campus security vehicles with live tracking technology, college police will be able to view a public tracking interface (PTI) that will allow every officer working to know exactly where another officer is located on school grounds. In the event of an emergency, outside police agencies would also have the ability to access geo-locational data via the public tracking interface that can help in a variety of security applications.
When a student leaves for college they should only be focused on getting a higher education and learning the skills necessary to achieve their long-term employment goals. Safety and security should not be a primary concern, but until crime can be completely eliminated, parents, educators, and police officers will need to do whatever is needed to enhance personal safety on every college campus. Thankfully, personal GPS tracking systems and other tools will help in the effort.
- National Sexual Assault Hotline: Call 1-800-656-4673 or visit www.rainn.org for support and resources.
- The National Domestic Violence Hotline: Call 1-800-799-7233 or visit www.thehotline.org for support and resources.
- The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or visit www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org for support and resources.
- Campus Police: Contact your campus police or security office to report any incidents and get immediate help.
- Title IX Office: Contact your school’s Title IX office, which is responsible for handling reports of sexual harassment and assault, to report any incidents and get help and resources.
Matthew is a freelance writer who is passionate about technology, music, photography, and decentralized finance.