Personal Safety Info

We at the Department of Safety want you to have a safe and enjoyable university experience. Below you will find ways to better aid yourself while on and off campus. If you ever have any questions, feel free to contact us at 6005 to speak with the officer on duty. Have a good year!

General Safety Awareness Around Campus


Safety awareness on campus is EVERYONE’S responsibility.  Help us keep each other safe by clicking “guiding principles” on being more safety conscious when out on campus.  Thank you for your cooperation and partnership with this safety awareness campaign!

Personal Safety

  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times.
  • If you need to walk after dark, call Ext. 6005 for an escort or walk with friends.
  • Need help? Dial Ext. 6565 or utilize the blue emergency phones and stay on the line. Phones are located in Lot D(2), Lot C, Lot B near the RR tracks, Lot F at the crosswalk from the pit (between Fry & Kelly residences) and in the front of Fry building, behind Kelly, Lot WW at the side double doors from Jordan. Lot G at the back and front of Mellinger. The front and back of Smith. In front of Eisenhower in Lot VV. Campus maps are available to the Messiah University community and can be obtained at the CIC or the Department of Safety office. Know the location of these devices; they are for your benefit.
  • When walking, walk deliberately and have your keys in hand.
  • If someone appears to be following you, make them aware to stop following you (yell). If person continues, proceed to a well lighted area, occupied building, other people, or the emergency phone. Contact the Department of Safety immediately.
  • Make a roommate or friend aware where you are going.
  • Take a self-defense course like RAD.
  • Carry a noisemaker.
  • If you are being harassed or feel that your personal safety is being compromised, call Safety immediately.

Residence Hall/Apartment Safety

  • Do not prop exterior access doors to residence halls.
  • Do not prop apartment or dorm room doors, even if you, or a roommate, is present within the room.
  • Never let someone into a residence if you do not know them, even if they say they are visiting.
  • Do not place your name or picture on your door; it would be easy for someone to claim to know you or a roommate.
  • Lock your doors, even if you are just going down the hallway.
  • Never lend your access card to anyone. Do not place your keys on the same key ring as your ID.
  • Never leave money or other valuables unsecured. If you need to have large amounts of money, do not make others aware of the amount or the location where it is kept. Buy a personal safe.
  • Have valuables engraved (stereos, TV's, bicycles, etc.). Engraving is available to the Messiah University community free of charge. Should items be stolen, this aids in the return of these items to their rightful owner.
  • Report lost or stolen keys/ID's immediately. If needed, the Department of Safety can temporarily rekey your residence door.
  • All Messiah University employees are required to carry their identification. It is your right to identify who may be requesting access to your room, and for what reason. If they refuse to show their Id., get their name and immediately call DoS. Do not give them access into your room until their identity is confirmed.

Vehicle/Parking Area Safety

  • Park in a well lighted area, hide or cover valuables.
  • If after dark, you may call for an escort from the Department of Safety at Ext. 6005.
  • Always lock your vehicle windows and doors, both as you are in the vehicle, and when you exit the vehicle.
  • As you approach your vehicle, check the surrounding area around the vehicle.
  • Check the back seat as you approach the vehicle, and ensure that the vehicle's locks are still engaged before entering the vehicle.
  • If a person is loitering at, or in the immediate area of your vehicle, do not approach and call the Department of Safety to check the area.
  • If you believe that you are being followed by another vehicle, pull into the nearest police or fire station, convenience or grocery store that is well lighted. If on campus, come to the Dispatch office at Eisenhower using the West side door, or stop an officer. Do not stop and exit the vehicle if the other vehicle stops behind you.
  • If your vehicle becomes disabled: Stay in your vehicle if someone stops to assist. Roll down the window and ask them to call the police. If on campus, notify the Department of Safety. Invest in an emergency roadside kit, a cell phone for emergency use, and learn to change a flat tire.

Bicycle Safety

  • Register your bicycle with the Department of Safety. We also recommend that all bicycles be engraved in the event that a bike is stolen or lost; this aids in the return of the article to the rightful owner. This is a service for the Messiah University community.
  • Lock your bike with a U-lock at one of the bike racks on campus. Even if you are only going to be gone for a few minutes. Do not lock your bike to lamp posts on campus or to stairwell railings in the buildings. Use the bike racks. Lock it or Lose it!
  • Wear protective head gear, check all components of the bike for proper working order, invest in a headlamp and flashing rear light for night time riding, and obey all traffic control devices, and use proper hand signals. Not all drivers on campus may be paying attention, so you must help as much as possible.
  • If you believe your bike has been stolen or is lost, check all of the bike racks on campus. Then come to Department of Safety to file a report.

Fire Safety

  • Be aware of all exits out of each building, and the safest route to escape a burning building.
  • Become familiar with where the fire pull stations are located in your residence. In the traditional residence halls they are located at the center and side stairwells, and within the lobbies. In the apartment complexes, in the hallway of each floor and in the basements.
  • ONLY use the pull stations where you see or smell legitimate smoke. It is an offense punishable of up to $500 for each offense to trigger a false alarm.
  • DO NOT obstruct, tamper with, hang on, or damage pull stations, fire extinguishers, sprinkler pipes or sprinkler heads, smoke detectors, strobe lights or the audible alarms. If you are found to have done any of the above, there will be a $500 fine per offense.
  • Fire drills are conducted periodically for each building on campus. Please cooperate with the fire drills. It could save your life!
  • Be vigilant when cooking. We have had to evacuate buildings because people have forgotten to turn off the stove/oven and left food on them.
  • Do not burn candles, smoke, or start fires within the buildings.
  • Don't forget to unplug irons, curling irons or any other heat producing item.
  • There is a fire response pamphlet posted in each room and apartment on campus.

Rail Road Safety

  • Do not cross the rail road tracks that run parallel to the University on foot, on bike, or by any other means. Only cross at the north and south entrances to campus. The rail lines and rail bed are owned, operated, and maintained by Norfolk Southern Rail Road. If you cross at any other point, you are trespassing. This will be strictly enforced.
  • Obey crossing signals at all rail road crossings. The lights, bells, and gates are there for your protection.
  • Do not try to race to cross the tracks if there is an oncoming train.
  • Weight ratio of train versus passenger vehicle--- 4,000 to 1. It would be like a car running over a soda can.
  • Stopping Distance for a 150 car train: 1.5 miles.