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15 Ways to Stay Safe While in College

15 Quick & Easy Ways to Keep You, and Your Stuff, Safe While at School

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Mixed race college students relaxing in dorm
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Staying safe while you're in college doesn't have to be complicated. These fifteen tips can be done with minimal effort and can avoid lots of problems later.

    1. Make sure the door to your residence hall is locked at all times. You wouldn't just leave the front door to your house open, would you?

    2. Don't let anyone into your hall that you don't know. Not letting someone in doesn't make you look like a jerk. It makes you look like a good neighbor and, if the person is supposed to be in your hall, they'll be grateful for it.

    3. Make sure your room door is locked at all times. Yes, this even means when you run down the hall to borrow a book or hop in the shower.

    4. Be careful with your keys. Also, if you lose them, don't depend on your roommate to keep letting you in, thinking that your keys will just "pop up." Pay the fine and get a new set.

    5. If you have a car, lock it. It seems so easy to remember, yet it's so easy to forget.

    6. If you have a car, check on it. Just because you haven't been using your car very much this semester doesn't mean someone else hasn't!

    7. Get a locking device for your laptop. This may be a physical lock or some kind of electronic tracking or locking device.

    8. Watch your stuff in the library. You may need to take a quick run to the vending machines to clear your mind . . . just as someone happens to walk by and see your iPod and laptop unattended.

    9. Keep your windows locked. Don't be so focused on locking your door that you forget to check the windows, too.

    10. Put emergency numbers in your cell phone. If your wallet is stolen, will you know what phone number to call to cancel your credit cards? Put important phone numbers in your cell so that you can call the moment you notice something is missing. The last thing you want is someone cashing in on the money you've been budgeting for the rest of the semester.

    11. Use the campus escort service at night. You may feel embarrassed, but it's such a smart idea. And besides, who wouldn't want a free ride?!

    12. Always go somewhere at night with a friend. Male or female, big or small, safe neighborhood or not, this is always a good idea.

    13. Make sure someone knows where you are at all times. Heading to a club downtown? Going out on a date? There's no need to spill all the intimate details, but do let someone (a friend, a roommate, etc.) know where you're going and what time you expect to get back.

    14. If you live off-campus, call someone when you get home. You're studying for finals with a friend late one night at the library. Make a quick agreement that you'll call him when you get home later that evening.

    15. Know the phone number for Campus Safety. You never know: you may need it for yourself or for something you see from far away. Knowing the number off the top of your head (or at least having it in your cell phone) may be the most important thing to remember during an emergency.

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