By: Yade Medina
Carrollton, GA- College Students put their lives in the hands of institutions to keep them safe and healthy. Teenagers and young adults do their best to manage their responsibilities. They rely on the universities they choose to maintain their safety. At the University of West Georgia, students want to let the university know what it can do to protect them, to keep them safe, and to keep them informed.
Having the correct information is the best way to keep oneself safe. To know where you can go or what you can do without putting yourself in danger. UWG attempts to keep students informed through update emails. However, some students say that it truly is not enough information to go on during a situation.
Morgan Jordan, a former on-campus resident, said, “They haven’t sent any in a while; I believe they should be sending them out monthly.” More information should be given out based on the severity of situations.
There are situations such as the failing of elevators in the Oaks, where students received only two update emails on the status of the elevators. This could have been a much larger issue if both elevators were down. Students rely on elevators, not just for quality of life. There are students all over campus who need an accessible and open campus for their safety and their comfort.
Safety concerns among students have started to rise following a gunshot incident, which resulted in a bullet hole through a window on the third floor of The Oaks. Students were concerned when they received the email as it had little to no information for residents, aside from the origin of the gunshot. Neither was made clear to RA’s as they had to figure out a way to keep their residents safe.
When asked if they received enough information, an RA at the Oaks had this to say: “This is a tricky answer as I feel just because I myself was not instructed to do anything at the time the incident was occurring. However, if necessary for me to spring into action, I believe I am capable of maintaining myself and my residents’ safety.” The RAs at the University of West Georgia have done wonderfully with keeping residents informed to the best of their abilities, which is why they are so important on campus.
They are still, however, students; as such, they have their own needs, with the added responsibility of caring for others. The previous RA had this to say about what they need as a resident, “At the time, there’s not much I can think of outside of being vigilant. I’m non-binary but present as a woman, so I must always keep that in mind.”
Women and femme-presenting people on campus are most likely to suffer harassment and potential sexual assault or being debilitated. This is most frequent in party environments, with the latest incident occurring last month. The University of West Georgia does the best it can, but student voices about these concerns so that students feel like they can be safe.