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Mace & Crown | March 21, 2018

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Is ODU a Safe Campus to Be On?

Kenae Frazier
Contributing Writer

During the fall semester, there were many emails sent to students by Giovanna Genard about incidents that happen on or near campus. There have been many reports of robberies, gunshots fired and deaths. This has put fear into students around campus.

The police department has issued countless warnings to travel in groups, put insurance on our personal property and to remain aware of dangerous activity around us. The City Manager Marcus Jones has been planning for months to solve security issues at ODU. His suggestions are that all partygoers follow laws, codes and student policies, adding two code enforcement officials to work the areas around ODU.

However, most students do not believe taking those precautions will work. When students are looking for parties on the weekends, they do not want to feel unsafe at the location. The rise in crime around the campus is alarming. As a student, this spike in crime has interrupted my education, my social life and has made me fearful to attend activities at night. My parents and family are concerned about my well being and suddenly transferring colleges is at the forefront of conversations.

I chose Old Dominion because of the academic record and graduation rates. I never thought my safety would be in jeopardy. The response to this wave of crime indicates that police and university officials understand how serious the problem has become and responded with a comprehensive plan that makes students accountable for their safety. This partnership will be effective because it will target high traffic areas where crimes occur and crackdown on the violators that create an atmosphere of anxiety and fear for students. My friends and I have developed and system where we walk in numbers, stay in lighted areas and avoid off campus parties in high crime areas.

As a tuition-paying student of Old Dominion, it is my opinion that city leaders and the police department should be proactive in crime prevention, student safety and monitor increases in crime in certain areas in and around campus. Students feel that city leaders care about their concerns for safety and addressed them with initiatives that will decrease crime and increase student safety on campus. If successful, morale will increase among students and parents who were concerned about campus safety for their loved ones in an institution that has been entrusted with the care of college students. I feel better because of the response to crime my city leaders and my concerns have been addressed.