Campus Safety and Security

Berea College Public Safety (at 985-3333 or ext. 3333) is the central point of contact for all matters related to the safety of the College community and all issues related to personal security and protection of property.

Berea College has developed policies and procedures, offers educational programs, cooperates with local law enforcement agencies, and supports a Department of Public Safety to enhance the safety and security of its students, employees, and guests. The College recognizes shared responsibility for the welfare of the community and reminds students and employees of their personal responsibility to take prudent precautions and to inform others, especially Public Safety, about known safety hazards or security concerns.

Criminal, threatening, or suspicious activity, as well as injury or serious illness, should be reported promptly by calling Public Safety.

Officers have direct 24-hour radio contact with Berea and Madison County emergency response personnel and can contact other agencies for assistance when conditions necessitate. Telephone ext. 911 is used only for confirmed emergency situations that require the immediate assistance of Berea City Police, Berea Fire Department, and Madison County Ambulance Service. Please use discretion and call only in cases of an emergency. If 911 is dialed in error, please stay on the line and let the operator know that it is not an emergency.

Public Safety officers provide on-campus walking escorts to students who find themselves out on campus late at night and feel concern for their safety.

The persons recognized by the institution as Campus Security Authorities have a responsibility to report to Public Safety any known reportable crime within 24 hours of becoming aware of the situation. In addition to the Public Safety Director and all professional security staff members, the following are recognized Campus Security Authorities:

  • Vice President for Labor and Student Life
  • Assistant Vice President for Student Life
  • Director and Members of the Residential Life Collegium
  • Residence Hall Student Staff
  • Campus Life Director
  • Faculty and staff advisors to clubs and organizations
  • Director, Black Cultural Center
  • Director, Associate Director, and International Student Advisor of the International Student Center
  • Athletics Director and Coaches for: Baseball, Women’s Softball, Women’s Golf, Volleyball, Women’s Track, Men’s Track, Men’s Soccer, Women’s Soccer, Cross Country, Men’s Tennis, Women’s Tennis, Country Dancers, Swimming, Dance Group, Cheerleading
  • Intramural Director and Athletic Trainers
  • Trio Program Director and Upward Bound Director
  • Students for Appalachia Director, CELTS, and Project HEAL Staff members
  • College Deans
  • Director of Academic Services
  • Members of the Administrative Committee

The Public Safety Director is the person responsible for the proper notification to State Fire Marshall’s Office for all fires and threats of fire.

Safety alerts to campus of potentially threatening situations

When an incident occurs that may have a bearing on the present safety of the campus community, the College, within 24 hours of the first report of the incident, notifies members of the campus community. Information on the type of incident and threat is given, along with recommended prudent safety practices and procedures related to the incident. Information is sent directly to students, faculty, and staff members by use of the College e-mail system and also is posted on the Berea College Public Safety Bulletin Board. Depending on the perceived needs at the time, the school may additionally choose to post written notices in residence halls, distribute information through the College Web site, post information in the Berea College Post Office or notify through appropriate media. The community is urged to heed any advisories issued by the institution and work together in the joint effort of making the campus a safe place to live, work, and learn.

Students enjoy dual citizenship in general society and in an academic community. Berea College makes no attempt to shield its students from consequences of their actions, thus, status as a Berea student does not exempt anyone from local, state, or federal laws. In fact, being a member of an educational institution imposes an additional obligation to abide by all the rules of the institution, as well. Laws and the College’s conduct rules operate independently, though Public Safety and law enforcement agencies work cooperatively. When a crime has been committed, the College is obligated to notify the proper authorities so they may discharge their duty under the law. In such a case, the law does not substitute for Berea College’s rules and the College may pursue its own procedures for adjudicating alleged violations of the College’s conduct rules independent of any legal proceedings. Public Safety reports to the appropriate department on violations of College policies and regulations.

Some Safety DOs and DON’Ts

General Campus Safety

  • Don’t walk alone late in the evening.
  • Don’t study alone in classroom buildings at night.
  • Do walk in well-lit areas.
  • Do walk with confidence and self-assurance.
  • Do know where phones in the area are located.
  • Do read all caution and warning labels on containers.

Vehicle Safety

  • Do wear your safety belt.
  • Don’t travel alone for long distances.
  • Do carry keys to the vehicle in-hand for quick access to car if necessary.
  • Do park in well-lit areas.

Bike Safety

  • Do record serial numbers, the make, and the model.
  • Do lock bike to bike racks.
  • Do engrave your name or Student ID number on bike.
  • Do cross the street at crosswalks.
  • Do wear a helmet.

Residence Halls

  • Do lock your room door, even if you plan to be away only a short period of time.
  • Do record serial numbers on all electronic equipment.
  • Do unprop and close any residence-hall doors found open.
  • Do report immediately any suspicious activity or crime you observe.
  • Do avoid placing yourself in dangerous situations.

Fire Prevention

  • Don’t attempt to exit a room if door handle is hot or smoke is in the hall.
  • Don’t use a fire extinguisher on other than very small fires (example: trash cans)
  • Do activate fire alarm pull station immediately.
  • Do become familiar with fire evacuation procedures posted on residence-hall doors.
  • Do know where fire extinguishers and pull stations are located.
  • Do call ext. 3333 or 911 when alarm sounds in any building.

Crosswalk Safety

  • Don’t enter a crosswalk if the “Don’t Walk” sign is flashing.
  • Do cross only at crosswalks and whenever possible, cross only at signaled crosswalks.
  • Do wait until traffic stops before entering a crosswalk.
  • Do push the button once to request a “Walk” signal.
  • Don’t expect the “Walk” signal immediately.
  • Do remember that motorists also are trying to get somewhere and we need mutual respect in these busy intersections.

The College produces an annual report of campus crime statistics and security policies and procedures, available at their office on the first floor of Woods-Penniman Hall, or online at (Also see Residence Hall Rules and Regulations, and the Department of Public Safety.)

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