Augusta University named safest college campus in Georgia

A list of the safest college campus in the United States named Augusta University the safest campus in Georgia.

To determine the safest campuses, ADT Security Service studied university crime reports and organized those reports into three sections: violent crime, property crime and violence against women. Crime scores were then divided by enrollment in order to determine the total per-capita crime.

James Lyon, director of Augusta University Public Safety and chief of police, isn’t surprised that ADT ranked Augusta as Georgia’s safest campus for 2017.

“Based on our crime statistics, I do know that we are a safe campus,” he said. “ADT says we are a safe campus, and we can prove that, but we want to make sure people feel that they are safe on this campus. There is actual safety and perceived safety. I want people to feel like they’re safe on campus.”

But what makes Augusta’s campus stand out from the rest? Public safety’s efforts to engage the community.

“We make an effort to make sure that our officers are out in the community and engaging the university community in a non-law enforcement way,” Lyon said. “We want to show up and assist the community not just when they need help. That way when something comes up they feel comfortable coming to us and engaging us in conversation about safety issues.”

It’s not only about making people comfortable with public safety, though. The members of the public safety team enjoy interacting with the university community, says Lyon. The department recently started the Coffee with a Cop program where officers and community members gather conversation and coffee.

In the coming months, the Augusta community will see an increase in public safety activity. The office is updating signage and uniforms and introducing bike patrol officers.

“I think this will help make sure the community feels safe,” Lyon said. “We will have officers patrolling the interior of the campus on foot and bicycle patrol and the exterior of the campus in patrol vehicles. This is all part of the process of infusing community policing into our public safety operations.”

While all of these things ensure that Augusta University has a safe campus, ADT also cited several other programs that they believe make the campus safe. These include the department trainings offered by the Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response and Augusta’s use of the RAVE Guardian app. This free app allows students, faculty and staff to make calls to public safety, send crime and safety tips and call 911. The app is available down download on both android and IOS devices.

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Brennan Meagher
Written by
Brennan Meagher

Brennan Meagher is a communications coordinator at Augusta University. Contact her at 706-446-4806 or bmeagher@augusta.edu.

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Brennan Meagher Written by Brennan Meagher

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