Safety protocols at Tarleton
By: Kyley Wilhite
Tarleton State University has many different safety protocols and tools to keep the students safe.
Tarleton Police Chief Matt Welch said, “I think the thing that helps Tarleton is that Stephenville itself is a safe town. Whenever I looked last, Tarleton was rated number forty-four on the list for safest college town in America.”
When asked about safety in general, Welch discussed the many opportunities that are offered throughout the year saying, “We give out whistles, camera covers and drug detector tablets at freshman orientations and other events to ensure the safety of our students.”
This led to the topic of safety at night and on the outskirts of campus. Welch suggested that carrying pepper spray, a whistle or keys in your hand while walking is a good idea in order to increase your chances of staying safe if something were to happen.
“Higher crime happens on the outskirts of our campus, so whenever you park in those outside lots, I would suggest calling a roommate while walking back to your dorm,” Welch said.
Some students are still worried about their safety. Kimberely Muniz, a student on campus, said she is worried about the Tarleton Shuttle.
“I had an experience once where I needed a ride, so my friends and I called the shuttle. They said they couldn’t pick us up because we were located on Frey street,” Muniz said. “It would make me feel so much safer if they offered the shuttle closer to campus, directly at our dorms, because the issue with these attacks is that they happened outside of a dorm.”
If students want extra security when walking around, they can call 254-968-9002 to get ahold of the university police or control at 254-968-9265 if they feel unsafe. Police escorts are available 24/7, and officers will come and escort you to or from your specified location.
There is also a free app called TapRide that students can use to order a ride. The app will give you an estimated time of arrival as well as notify you when the driver is at your location. This service is available to anyone between 7 p.m. and 1 a.m. Sunday through Thursday.
“You can be waiting outside of the library at midnight, for example, and get on the app,” Welch explained. “From there you can put in a ride request, and it will tell you exactly when they’re there to take you to your location.”
Finally, the university has behind-the-scenes protocols that make the campus safer that students may not be aware of.
“For example, we install white light lamps instead of yellow light lamps, because it makes it easier to see colors. Whenever a student wants to make a claim and it’s nighttime, it makes it much easier to be sure that it was the color of their shirt or the color of the car,” Welch said.
To learn more about the safety resource at Tarleton go to https://www.tarleton.edu/police/services.html.