College students live in a somewhat protected environment on most campuses, but are still often targets for crime, both from within, but particularly from without, the college community. If you are a young adult college student, or you're paying for one, or more, to go to college, keep in mind that living safely can be achieved by taking some minor precautions.
One crime that many college apartment dwellers will be victims of at one time or another is apartment robbery. This can range from a stranger breaking into the apartment and stealing valuables, to a friend, roommate, neighbor or acquaintance who feel they should have access to your stuff.
For example, someone you know may just stop in, uninvited, and grab food, drinks or even toiletries without asking. This is more common than you might think as many young adults don't respect other's boundaries. To keep this type of crime from happening the apartment owner should:
1. ALWAYS LOCK YOUR APARTMENT ENTRANCE DOOR WHETHER HOME OR AWAY
2. KEEP YOUR BEDROOM DOOR LOCKED, ESPECIALLY WHEN AWAY FROM THE APARTMENT
3. KEEP ALL ELECTRONICS AND VALUABLES AWAY FROM BEING EASILY VIEWED FROM OUTSIDE. MAKE SURE TO INSTALL CURTAINS/BLINDS SO THAT NO ONE CAN JUST PEAK IN TO SEE WHAT YOU'VE GOT.
College students can be lulled into a false sense of security on a college campus, but they, statistically, are somewhat frequent targets for mugging, especially late at night when they might be returning from a party or nightclub. To avoid becoming a victim they should:
4. WALK IN A GROUP WHENEVER POSSIBLE
5. STICK TO LIGHTED AREAS AND AVOID STRETCHES THAT ARE PARTICULARLY DARK AT NIGHT.
6. ALWAYS BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS AND LOOK TO SEE IF YOU'RE BEING FOLLOWED.
7. WHEN PARKING AT A COMPLEX, MAKE SURE TO PARK IN A WELL LIT AREA AND LOOK AROUND BEFORE DEPARTING YOUR VEHICLE. HAVE YOUR FINGER ON THE AUTOMOBILE ALARM FUNCTION THAT IS ON MOST, IF NOT ALL, CAR FOBS AND PRESS IT IF YOU FEEL THE LEAST BIT UNCOMFORTABLE. THE SUDDEN BLARING OF A HORN AND FLASHING LIGHTS COULD BE ENOUGH TO SCARE ANY POTENTIAL MUGGER AWAY.
8. AVOID COMING HOME INTOXICATED, PARTICULARLY BY YOURSELF. MAKE SURE TO CARRY A PERSONAL SIZE OF PEPPER SPRAY WHENEVER YOU THINK YOU'LL BE RETURNING AT DARK.
Unfortunately a part of the college experience these days is there appears to be a higher prevalence of stalkers than in the society as a whole based on the active social scene. To potentially avoid becoming a stalker's victim, the college student should:
9. AVOID GIVING OUT PERSONAL INFORMATION UNTIL YOU'RE COMFORTABLE WITH A PERSON AND HAVE GOTTEN TO KNOW THEM AFTER SEVERAL INTERACTIONS. AVOID ONE-NIGHT STANDS IF AT ALL POSSIBLE.
10. IF YOU FEEL LIKE YOU'RE BEING STALKED, CONTACT THE STUDENT SERVICES OFFICE AND CAMPUS POLICE AND REPORT IT. GO WITH YOUR INSTINCTS AND DON'T BE AFRAID YOU'LL HURT SOMEONE'S FEELINGS.
Taking these simple precautions can be the difference in an enjoyable college experience, or one which has memories that can be life changing.
About the Author: R.L. Walters is the founder of FortifyMyHouse.com and acts as its chief contributor. He has over 30 years experience in security and investigations. He's an avid biker, and also enjoys hiking and photography. Besides managing Fortify My House, Lee also consults with a variety of corporations and private individuals in the area of security and investigations.