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Campus Events, Workshops Highlight Preparedness

Northwestern takes part in national effort to be ready in case of emergencies

  • Campus preparedness and safety workshops on Evanston and Chicago campuses
  • Emergency response team to explain program for students, faculty, staff, community
  • Important online guidelines on active shooter situation, violence prevention

EVANSTON, Ill. --- September is National Preparedness Month, and Northwestern University is taking part by providing safety workshops and resource fairs to raise awareness.

Preparedness month provides a forum for education about community programs and individual responsibilities related to safety.

"Our goal is to ensure the safety and security of our campus and to raise awareness of our plans,” said Nim Chinniah, executive vice president at Northwestern. "Through the great partnership between the University police and the Evanston police and fire departments, we are committed to the highest level of readiness in responding to real emergencies.”

Northwestern is committed to the safety and security of all members of the University community in case of various emergency scenarios, from natural disasters or power failures to terrorism or an active shooter. To that end, a series of educational activities are scheduled this month, and the University has created numerous guidelines filled with prevention and preparedness information. 

Campus Preparedness and Safety Workshops

Comprehensive training workshops on the Evanston and Chicago campuses will be conducted by the Office of Risk Management, University Police and Business Continuity Planning. The Evanston workshop will be held from noon to 2 p.m. Sept. 28 in the Northwestern Room at Norris University Center. The Chicago workshop will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. Oct. 1 in the Gray Seminar Room at the Robert H. Lurie Medical Research Center. Walk-ins are welcome.

Family and Student Resource Fairs

The University Police Emergency Services Division participated in the parent and family resource fair on Sept. 12 and will participate in the new student resource fair on Sept. 18. In addition to general preparedness awareness, the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) will participate to provide program awareness and recruitment. The Northwestern CERT educates students, faculty and staff about disaster preparedness for hazards that may impact the University community. Volunteers are welcome.

Guidelines Regarding Active Shooter Situation

Realizing that an active shooter situation is perhaps one of the most disturbing and traumatic of all emergency crises that could occur on campus, the University has taken a proactive approach in preparing for this type of emergency through a variety of prevention, preparedness and response strategies. Being prepared can make a great difference. It is important that members of the University community familiarize themselves with the following prevention and preparedness information:

  • Comprehensive violence prevention plan that provides information on numerous policies and programs dedicated to the prevention, reduction and management of acts of violence.
  • Behavioral Consultation Team that conducts threat assessments; addresses aberrant, dangerous or threatening behavior that might affect the safety or well-being of the campus community; and provides guidance and best practices for preventing violence and providing support services.
  • Crime Prevention Committee that coordinates campus-wide violence prevention education, programs and services that are designed to create a campus culture and climate of safety, respect and emotional support.
  • Comprehensive all-hazards Emergency Response Framework that outlines procedures coordinated and effective campus-wide response.
  • Web-based 30-minute video, titled "Shots Fired," that provides individual community members with critical guidance on how to recognize and survive an active shooter situation.
  • Safety guidelines for an active shooter situation on campus.

More than ever, it is important that the entire campus community know how individuals can respond in advance and help maintain good security and safety procedures. The University has an emergency training program that provides the individual community member with critical guidance on how to recognize and survive an active shooter. Community members are encouraged to schedule a presentation by contacting University Police.

For more information on preparedness and readiness for responding to emergencies, contact Clement Stokes of Northwestern University Police. For information on business continuity planning, contact Sharlene Mielke. For information on risk management, contact Dave Perkins.

National Preparedness Month is led by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

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