2. Marquette has emergency plans in place
The Marquette community is keeping the students, faculty, staff, alumni and families of Virginia Tech in our thoughts and prayers. The tragic events on the VT campus are causing colleges and universities worldwide, including Marquette, to re-examine their emergency plans.
Marquette has four key resources in dealing with a crisis. First, the university’s Department of Public Safety is a highly qualified force of armed officers and prevention specialists who receive annual training in handling a variety of crisis situations. Second, the university has a well-articulated Critical Incident Management Plan, which has been tested and refined and will be tested again this summer in a simulated emergency situation. The plan calls for utilizing all available means of communication in the event of an emergency; this includes e-mail, the university Web site, university voice mail, Access TV message boards, postings in buildings both on and off-campus and use of megaphones or other devices as needed. Third, an electronic lock system allows the Department of Public Safety to lockdown all academic buildings instantaneously using technology; all residence halls have a lockdown mechanism at the front desks, which are manned 24 hours a day. Finally, the Department of Public Safety has a close working relationship with the Milwaukee Police Department and numerous other local and state law enforcement and emergency management agencies.
The focus of all emergency planning is the safety and security of students, faculty and staff.
As part of its emergency planning, the university has identified and trained emergency coordinators in every building on campus, and fire marshals have been identified in every department. The emphasis is on preventive measures, especially awareness of the unusual, such as suspicious packages or individuals, doors pried open that should be locked, leaks and odors. These individuals will also assist with notification and evacuation if necessary.
Security is everyone’s business. All students, faculty and staff members can help keep the campus safe by being aware of their surroundings, by reporting suspicious incidents to Public Safety, and by sharing with counselors or administrators any information about an individual who has threatened to do harm to self or others.
On a day-to-day basis, Marquette’s Department of Public Safety works to create a safe environment for everyone at Marquette and to help both students and employees develop lifelong safety habits.