Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


It’s Better to be Safe than Sorry

This summer, FAU police invested nearly $200,000 in securing the university. Even though the budget has been cut close to $9.6 million, Police Chief Charles Lowe and President Frank Brogan agree: you can’t put a price on safety.

Due to campus crimes across the nation, including last year’s Virginia Tech massacre that left 32 dead, FAU is out to make sure that similar actions don’t take place close to home. The new systems, which are currently being tested once a month, range from campus-wide alerts to personal phone messages.

Reverse 911

Don’t call them, they’ll call you. In case of an emergency on campus, FAU police send out an automated voice message to notify all students, faculty and staff about the incident and to stay off campus until further notice. While getting word out to the FAU community as soon as possible is ideal, Chief Lowe says that it’s difficult to reach everyone, especially starting out at 27,000 students.

Text Messaging

Similar to the Reverse 911 system, FAU police can send out a notice to the FAU community. Only this time, it reaches more people quicker by sending out mass text messages with notices of a campus emergency. Chief Lowe says that the results show it works faster than the Reverse 911, since it doesn’t have to individually dial each number to send the message.

Siren Alert System

Three sirens strategically placed around the Boca campus are so loud, Chief Lowe says that attendees at the Boca Raton Airport down the street can hear them. With the push of a button from the police department, the sirens go off and an automated voice message goes out, telling students, faculty and staff to either find a safe place on campus or to vacate as soon as possible. FAU police first used this system when the campus experienced its first shooting in April, even though testing on the system was still in its infancy. Currently, Chief Lowe is hoping to move the systems up to the Jupiter campus, since that is the only other FAU campus where there are residential halls.

Pantech Zoom Cameras

Even though the police department has 350 different ways of watching you, these new cameras just make it easier. Fixed cameras, which currently make up a strong majority of the cameras already in use, are made to stay in one place and cannot be operated to pan around a certain area. The Pantech zoom cameras can not only move up, down, left and right, but also zoom in on incidents which police may deem suspicious. Three of these cameras are already in use on the Boca campus, and the police department has installed them on other campuses – including Fort Lauderdale and Port St. Lucie.

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