University Offers Enhanced Security Escort Service

Post a Comment » Written on March 6th, 2008     
Filed under: News
CHICAGO, IL (March 6, 2008) – Members of the North Park University campus community have been taking advantage of an all-night security escort service that started when classes began last fall, but usage has increased greatly since the beginning of the current semester, says Dan Gooris, director of campus security.

Personnel in the security office provide the escort service that is available to students, faculty and staff from dusk to dawn. The service initially was set up to handle requests from dusk until 2 a.m., but many of the requests were for as late as 4 a.m., so the university changed the policy, Gooris says.

The escort service extends across all parts of the campus as well as nearby off-campus areas, including the Brown Line train station at Kimball and Kedzie avenues, located roughly a half-mile away. Many of the later requests come from people returning from work or attending events in the city, Gooris says.

The increase in use may be related in part to the unusually cold weather, Gooris says. “It also takes a while for people to become aware of services such as this.”

During the fall semester, security personnel conducted 56 escorts, 10 of which were to or from off-campus locations.

In the wake of the recent violence at Northern Illinois University, North Park President David Parkyn released a memo highlighting the school’s extensive efforts to keep the campus safe. To further strengthen security, North Park will implement a policy in the 2008-2009 academic year requiring all students, faculty and staff to wear their unique identification card in a clearly visible position while they are in public spaces on the campus.

“This practice will help all of us to better identify visitors to the campus community,” Parkyn wrote.

Gooris says, however, that there ultimately is no way for schools to totally eliminate all risk. “Not if you want to have an open campus,” he adds.

More information on campus security procedures and safety tips are available on the university website.

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