This report covers the proceedings of a 2018 forum sponsored by the National Center for Campus Safety (NCCPS) and attended by campus safety leaders and subject-matter experts for the purposes of defining the value of campus emergency management to the whole community and proposing recommendations for addressing some of the challenges facing campus emergency management teams in gaining the cooperation and support of host communities in addressing campus safety.
The forum was attended by 15 emergency management leaders from 13 institutions of higher education (IHEs) across the country. These included college emergency managers, chiefs of police, and campus safety administrators. Forum participants identified three areas in which campus emergency management programs face notable strategic challenges in communicating their value to the campus and host communities. One area of concern is addressing the mindset in the campus community that emergency management programs and resources exist to respond to singular major campus safety threats and disasters rather than to plan, execute, and upgrade an ongoing safe environment for the campus community. Another strategic challenge discussed focused on underfunding and understaffing of campus safety programs due to its being viewed by administrators as having low priority in the educational goals of higher education. This is related to a third concern discussed in the forum, which relates to IHE leaders and emergency management administrators using different terminology in discussing how campus emergency management should be aligned with institutional priorities. Forum participants discussed a number of tactics and strategies for addressing these identified challenges.
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