CU prepares ahead one year after campus stabbing
CU administration is continuing efforts to address countrywide campus safety concerns.
Security at CU became personal for local students last year when then freshman finance major Michael Knorps was slashed outside of the UMC by a former university employee. The university immediately came under scrutiny by students for their hiring practices.
In a statement released last September, CU spokesman Bronson Hilliard said the university had taken steps to prevent hiring potentially dangerous workers again by introducing mandatory background checks for every employee.
CU Police Cmdr. Brad Wiesley said the police look at campus safety and continue to work closely with the university in order to evaluate safety concerns on a regular basis.
“Every time there’s a major incident, we look at the incident and try and determine what was done well, and we look at our operation and see if any of that can be applied to us,” Wiesley said. “After Virginia Tech, one of the things we focused on was communication with the campus. At the time, [Virginia Tech] used email and Web site updates, the problem being that people were still asleep or not at computers.”
Wiesley added that the RAVE CU system, a text messaging-based security project that sends alerts to students of possible threats on campus, was installed just one week before the stabbing because of lessons learned at Virginia Tech.
The university is also making sure that those who don’t carry cell phones will receive warnings as well.
“We have to use many different means to reach the broadest population,” said campus Fire Marshal Mansour Alipour-fard.
Newly constructed or renovated buildings, such as the business and law facilities, have been outfitted with numerous speakers. In the event of an emergency, CUPD will be able to broadcast voice messages to a total of 35 buildings from their offices via a console, Alipour-fard said.
The university is also considering installing a large outdoor PA system similar to systems used in tornado and flood warnings, as well as an emergency alert broadcast system on the numerous flat-screen monitors located in the UMC and business schools, though neither idea is currently underway.
Lauren Shapiro, a sophomore business major, said she was impressed with the university’s efforts.
“I don’t really think you can ever be prepared for violence on campus, but I feel better knowing that safety is such a big issue,” she said.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Conor Doyle at firstname.lastname@example.org.