The Woods Residence Halls | Photo by Kayli Thompson | The Wright State Guardian
Ensuring the safety and well being of students residing in campus housing has proven to be a primary concern for Wright State University (WSU) through continued efforts by housing officials and university police.
Recently, consolidation efforts within the university’s police department took place in order to adjust to the university’s diminishing enrollment numbers.
WSU is operating with a Department of Public Safety similar to that of other colleges and universities in the area, and while changes are occurring, officials say there will be no change to the level of safety provided to students during or after consolidation efforts take place.
“The restructuring and reorganization under the model of a Department of Public Safety will not diminish the way we provide police services for the community,” Interim Director of Public Safety Kurt Holden said. “The WSU police department will always provide 24/7 patrols around campus and campus housing. If anything, services will be better than before.”
Holden says that consolidation efforts help create efficiencies in how university police provide safety services for the campus community.
“The police department will become one of a few divisions and units that fall under the Department of Public Safety. This model is similar to those at other colleges and universities such as Bowling Green, UD and others,” Holden said.
Wright State Title IX Coordinator and Equity Investigator Debra Monk says that active communication and a positive relationship amongst police officers and those in the Office of Inclusive Excellence is crucial in providing proper services to students when necessary.
“I met with WSU’s officers on my second day to work. The relationship we have is critical and I have found the officers to be extremely concerned about the sexual assault issues that have recently taken place,” Monk said. “In the short time I have been here the police officers have been very helpful.”
In the event of an emergency on campus, WSU provides an easily accessible service for students that grants police assistance.
Located across the main campus of Wright State and throughout strategically placed locations in campus housing are bright blue-lighted telephones. These telephones provide students direct access to police officers at all hours of the day or night.
“The blue lights around campus are a great tool and safety feature that WSU provides to the community,” Holden said.
“For example, someone may want a safety escort because they do not want to walk to their dorm room alone, they see something suspicious, something makes them uncomfortable or they want to report an emergency of some kind. These are great tools because when a student is to push the button it will ring into our dispatch center and an officer will respond immediately.”
The blue lights aren’t the only safety precaution taken by the university, however.
Director of Residence Life and Housing Dan Bertsos says that housing security measures are more than abundant.
“Security measures include information provided at the initial floor meetings, swipe access or key access into buildings, strategically placed cameras outside of buildings and live-in staff who are on call and making rounds on a regular basis. We have staff on call 24/7 365 days a year and we are all in collaboration with campus law enforcement staff.”
Bertsos encourages students to be proactive in their own safety and the safety of their neighbors as well.
“If you see something, say something,” Bertsos said. “Call 2111 and they will respond or contact Residence Life and Housing staff on call. Make sure to lock your door when you leave your apartment, don’t walk at night by yourself and wear your mask!”
For more information on Wright State’s police department, crime incident procedures and emergency phone numbers, view the 2020 Annual Security and Fire Safety Report here: