Ohio Wesleyan uses the OWU ALERT system to inform the campus of emergency situations via email, voice, and text messages.
Once an emergency is determined—including severe weather warnings—the University will send an OWU ALERT email to your owu.edu email account and a voice/text message to your cellular phone of record.
Because of the vital nature of these communications, students and employees are auto-enrolled for both OWU ALERT emails and cell phone voice/text messages. If you have downloaded the CampusShield app to your cell phone, you also will receive push notifications of OWU ALERT emergency messages. [Download the app (Android) (iOS).]
Parents and guardians of students; spouses, partners, and other emergency contacts of employees; and on-campus contract workers (such as ABM and AVI Fresh) will be provided by the University with instructions on how to sign up for OWU ALERTS that will be sent via voice and text to their cell phones.
ALERTS, Advisories, and Notifications
In addition to OWU ALERTS, Ohio Wesleyan's Department of Public Safety also sends advisories and notifications when information needs to be shared without sending an emergency announcement.
- Any life-threatening emergency that requires immediate action will be issued as an OWU ALERT.
- Any potential or ongoing threat will be issued by email as a Public Safety Advisory. These advisories, known as Timely Warnings in the Clery Act, provide guidance for collecting and sharing crime information.
- Any significant impact to the campus environment will be sent by email as a Campus Operations Notification. (Examples include temporary parking lot closures and planned fire alarm testing.)
During a campus emergency, call 9-1-1 or the OWU Public Safety non-emergency line (740-368-2222) only if you have pertinent information to share. Our priority will be keeping our community safe and handling the emergency; any distractions detract from that effort.
We know how important it is to provide information quickly, and we will provide updates via owu.edu/emergency and our various messaging systems as quickly as appropriate.
For questions about the OWU ALERT system, please contact Cole Hatcher in the Office of University Communications at email@example.com.
Mass Notification Guidelines and Examples
- Text & Phone
- Safety app notification
- Campus display boards
- Active threats
- Weather emergencies that require immediate action
- Other life-threatening hazards
Public Safety Advisory
- Safety app notification
- Serious or ongoing threats to the campus community
- Weather emergencies with no immediate action required
Campus Operations Notification
- Safety app notification
- Campus open/close status
- Dining services impacted
- Building/lot closures
- Electrical outages
- Snow removal notices
- Other adverse conditions affecting campus operations
Message Classification System Examples
The following are intended merely as examples of how OWU may use different messaging systems in different circumstances. OWU may use systems differently in these or any other situations based on circumstances and the professional judgment of responders.
Question: Which message system would OWU use in the following example? The National Weather Service issues a tornado warning for Delaware, Ohio. There is an immediate threat to students and they must seek interior shelter immediately.
Answer: The OWU ALERT system. The campus community will receive a phone call and text message. Students using Ohio Wesleyan’s Campus Shield safety app also will receive a push notification. The owu.edu/emergency webpage will display all alerts and follow-up messages.
Question: Which message system would OWU use in the following example? An OWU student walking near campus is approached by two individuals who demand money and threaten harm if the student doesn’t comply. The student gives them the money, and the suspects flee in a vehicle heading away from campus. The student immediately calls 9-1-1 and provides a description. Delaware Police and OWU Public Safety officers are actively searching for the vehicle and two suspects.
Answer: A Public Safety Advisory. This incident is a Clery-reportable offense, but there is no longer an immediate threat to the campus community because the subjects have fled the area. (An OWU ALERT would be issued only if the campus community needs to take immediate life-saving action.)
Question: Which message system would OWU use in the following example? A power outage occurs at 5 p.m. on the residential side of campus. The Smith Dining Hall is closed as a result, and AVI moves all food service to the Hamilton-Williams Campus Center Marketplace.
Answer: A Campus Operations Notification. The campus community would be alerted via email and those using the Campus Shield Safety app would receive a push notification. This incident adversely impacts the campus community’s access to food, but it is not an immediate life-threatening emergency, nor is it a potential or ongoing threat to the campus community. Other factors during a power outage – for example, if fire protection systems begin to deplete backup battery systems – may prompt follow-up messages via a Public Safety Advisory or an OWU ALERT.