The safety and well-being of Ferris State University students, faculty, staff and visitors is of primary importance to the University. Extensive efforts are made to educate members of the University community about responsible behavior and individual actions which they can take to help ensure their personal safety. Crime prevention is emphasized and security measures are employed to help our students, employees and visitors be as free as possible from threats to their safety.
FSU Business Policy 2011:10, Clery Act Compliance
Reporting Crime and Other Emergencies
If you are a victim of a crime or a witness to one, or if you need to report a fire, medical, or other emergency, on or off campus, DIAL 911.
Campus Security Authority
Universities are required to disclose statistics concerning the occurrence of certain criminal offenses reported to local law enforcement agencies or any official of the institution who is defined as a "Campus Security Authority."
The law defines "Campus Security Authority" as: "An official of an institution who has significant responsibility for student and campus activities."
Students can report crime to any campus security authority, including, but not limited
to, University Police, local police, Vice Presidents, Associate Vice Presidents, Deans,
Associate Deans, Directors, Assistant Directors, Department Heads, Educational Counselors,
Faculty & Staff, Registered Student Organization Advisors, Housing & Residence Life
Business Manager, Hall Directors, Residence Hall Advisors, Coordinator of Student
Life, Inter fraternity Council Advisor, Coordinator of Intramurals, PTM Director/Manager
Racquet & Fitness Center, PTM Administrative Assistant, Athletic Coaches and Assistant
Coaches, Athletic Director, Associate Athletic Director, Williams Auditorium Manager,
Director of Student Conduct and Student Conduct Specialist.
The mission of the Ferris State University Department of Public Safety is to protect the people and property of the University community. The Department's goal is to make the Ferris State University campus safe and to provide the University with a highly-trained, professional police service.
The Department of Public Safety employs 14 police officers, certified by the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards. They receive their police power and arrest authority from the Board of Trustees as empowered by Public Act 120 of 1990, and the Mecosta County Sheriff . The Department's jurisdiction is Mecosta County; however, Ferris State University campus and adjacent streets are the primary focus. Our department, the City of Big Rapids and the Mecosta County Sheriff Department have a mutual aid agreement and assist each other when requested. The Department is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Our office is located on the west end of campus at the West Commons building in front of Cramer Hall. If you have an emergency, you should call 911. For non-emergencies, you should contact this office at 591-5000 or come to the office at any time of the day or night. The University encourages accurate and prompt reporting of all crimes to the Department or other appropriate police agency.
For campus emergencies, DIAL 911
Training is considered a vital part of maintaining a high level of service to the Ferris community; therefore, officers are regularly trained in the following:
Campus Security Programs
Employees and students are informed of campus security procedures and practices at new employee/student orientation and as specially requested presentations (department/class presentation request, Summer University, etc.). Safety Posters with crime prevention/safety/security information are posted annually in campus buildings. Annual fire/severe weather drills are recommended to all of campus.
Student Foot Patrol
The Department of Public Safety employs student foot patrol officers as extra eyes and ears on the campus. They look for suspicious situations, criminal activity or other problems that should be reported to the Department and assist with patrolling the campus during the evening hours.
The Department of Public Safety provides an on-campus escort service for campus residents during the fall and winter semesters. The student foot patrol provides escorts to students who request them between 9:00 p.m. and 3:00 a.m. Monday through Sunday while school is in regular session. Those interested in an escort should contact the Department at (231) 591-5000.
In order to better serve the community, the Department of Public Safety offers crime prevention programs and brochures to faculty, staff and students concerning such topics as theft prevention, sexual assault awareness, alcohol abuse and drug abuse. Crime prevention presentations are also sponsored by the Office of Residential Life, the Counseling Center, and student groups in the residence halls and at other campus locations.
These programs can be very helpful because they provide tips to enhance personal safety and to avoid becoming a crime victim. Crime prevention programming and services provided by the Department of Public Safety are free of charge.
Identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes in the nation, and students may be particularly vulnerable to this crime. Learn how to protect yourself and your future from identity theft by going to: www.ed.gov/misused.
Ferris State University provides two methods of access to police and emergency personnel. First, the Department of Public Safety emergency dispatcher or Meceola Central dispatcher may be reached from any phone on campus by dialing 911. The emergency telephone number alerts the dispatcher that there is an emergency and that call receives priority.
Second, blue light emergency phones have been installed outdoors in strategic locations around campus. A simple push of the emergency button connects the caller with the dispatcher and alerts the dispatcher that the call is an emergency.
Campus Crime Hotline 591-5900
Crime or suspicious activity on campus may be reported anonymously through the Campus Crime Hot Line at 591-5900. The Hot Line provides the community of law abiding citizens the opportunity to anonymously report any information they have about criminal or suspicious activity. The goal of the Hot Line is to receive information about criminal activity that may not otherwise be available. The information will be used to investigate reported criminal or suspicious activity and to make the campus a safer place to live, work and receive an education.
Office of Housing and Residence Life Missing Student Protocol
Federal regulations require colleges to inform students of the option to have the contact person of their choice notified in the event a student is reported “missing.” In such instances, the University is required to contact parents when the student is under the age of 18. Students 18 or older may also “opt in” or request such notification to occur should they be reported “missing.” Notification would occur within 24 hours of the student being reported “missing.”
A report of “missing” includes a reasonable/reliable report or suspicion that the student is missing or may be endangered. By providing contact information and signing the back of the emergency contact information card (Housing Blue Card), a student agrees to participate in this program during the current academic year. This participation may be revoked at any time by noting so on the Emergency Contact Information form. In cases of revoked participation (for students 18 or older), students would continue to be subject to university policy regarding parental and emergency notification.
Residence Hall Security
The residence halls have established student desk monitors and student security personnel to routinely check the residence halls. All Residence Halls are locked 24 hours a day and cannot be accessed unless a student residing in that hall swipes their ID at the exterior doors. All residence halls are equipped with emergency blue light phones to enable students to contact 9-1-1 at the touch of a button.
Most academic and service buildings are open for business between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Some buildings require access until 9 p.m. or later due to special activities. All employees who have a key and want to enter campus buildings after hours are encouraged to inform the Department for their safety.
Light surveys are made periodically by public safety officers and defective lights are reported on a regular basis to the Physical Plant, which takes corrective action as soon as possible. Physical Plant staff also continually review campus lighting needs and respond to concerns expressed by campus community members regarding deficient lighting. Lighting concerns can be directed to the Physical Plant Office at 591-2600.
Emergency Response Team
The University has an Emergency Management Team which develops and maintains updated emergency plans for disasters. Resources and key officials have been identified to assist in dealing with various crisis situations.
The University has an alcohol and drug policy that prohibits unauthorized possession, sale or use of alcoholic beverages. Alcohol-free programs are promoted and provided to the University community on a regular basis.
Drug Free Environment
Consistent with Michigan and Federal law, Ferris seeks to maintain a workplace and educational environment free from the unlawful manufacture, distribution, possession, use or sale of a controlled substance, which is prohibited on any property under the control of and governed by the Ferris State University Board of Trustees, and at any site where work or student activity is performed by individuals on behalf of the University.
Employees and students may obtain a copy of the Drug Free Workplace Policy and the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Compliance Statement from the Office of Human Resource Development, Office of the Dean of Student Life, Department of Public Safety, Office of Student Judicial Services , FLITE, or the Counseling Center.
The Department participates in a four-county drug enforcement consortium, the Central Michigan Enforcement Team. This team is supported by a state grant and local matching funds to allow investigation of suspected drug dealing in the four-county area, including the Ferris State University campus.
Firearms and other weapons are prohibited on campus. The ban applies to rifles; shotguns; handguns; paint guns; BB and pellet pistols and rifles which use spring, gas or air propulsion; sling shots; whips; hunting knives; knives with blades longer than 2.5 inches; and bows and arrows and other weapons. Residence hall residents may register and store weapons at the Department during hunting season.
Ferris State University takes seriously its responsibility to make the campus as safe as possible; however, since the University is part of the broader society, criminal activity can occur on campus. When an incident occurs that may threaten the safety of students, faculty, staff and visitors, Ferris ensures that timely reports are made of such crimes to the local news media, including the student newspaper, local newspaper and radio stations and the employee newsletter. The public reporting of such crimes requires the cooperation of the media to help inform students, employees and the public of any possible danger, to empower individuals to be responsible for their own security and the security of others, and to help prevent similar occurrences. Crime alerts are produced and distributed to the campus community as needed.
Victims of sexual assaults are encouraged to report the crime to the Department and/or the appropriate police agency with jurisdiction where the crime occurred. University officials will assist victims in notifying these authorities and obtaining support and assistance.
If the victim resides on campus and desires a change in assigned housing, they may contact the hall director or the Office of Residential Life at 591-3749. If the victim desires a class schedule change, they may contact their academic advisor or counselor.
The range of sanctions for conviction of any conduct violation may be a reprimand up to dismissal from the University. (See Student Handbook for details.)
The accuser and accused have the right to have others present during a judicial disciplinary hearing and shall be notified of the outcome of a campus disciplinary hearing.
The victim of a sexual assault should not shower nor bathe so that evidence of the crime is preserved. All clothing, bedding and other physical evidence should be secured and turned over to the police.
The Counseling Center can be contacted directly by the victim, or with their consent, by the Department of Public Safety, Office of Judicial Services or by any other University employee.
The victim will receive, from anyone of the three above offices, a sexual assault information packet. The victim and the accused are entitled to the same opportunities in regard to having others present at, and being informed of, the outcome of any institutional judicial disciplinary proceeding.
Upon receipt of a sexual assault complaint, a thorough investigation shall be completed. Victims have the option of making a report with or without prosecution. All incidents will be handled on the University level.
The Department offers free Rape Aggression Defense training to the students, faculty, staff and members of the community. Contact DPS at 591-5000 to inquire.
Registered Sex Offenders Information
Law Enforcement information concerning registered sex offenders may be obtained from the Michigan Public Sex Offender Registry.
Information for Crime Victims
For more information regarding Crime Victim Rights, assistance, and Compensation, visit: Michigan Department of Community Health Crime Victim Page.
Campus Community Task Force
The Campus Community Task Force was developed by the University to bring the University and local community together to find solutions to the problem of alcohol abuse and other related issues. Information about the task force is available from the Vice President of Student Affairs or the Director of the Department of Public Safety.
Public Safety Oversight Committee
The committee was created in 1999 to address grievances by persons against Public Safety Officers or the Public Safety Department and may make recommendations to the Director of Public Safety that disciplinary measures be taken by the Department against any Public Safety Officer who is found responsible for misconduct in office. The Oversight Committee currently meets the fourth Thursday of each month between September and May
Department of Public Safety, 591-5000 (24 Hours)
Counseling Center, Birkam Health Center, Room 210, 591-5968 (8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.) Monday through Friday.
Office of Student Conduct, BCH 214, 591-3619
Women's Information Services (W.I.S.E.), 796-6600 (24 hours)
Fire Safety Report - Dial 911 to report any fire
Per federal law, Ferris State University is required to annually disclose statistical data on all fires that occur in on-campus student housing facilities. Listed below is the non-emergency number to call to report fires that have already been extinguished in on-campus student housing.
Ferris State University Campus Police (231) 591-5000
In 2013, Ferris State University had two reported fire incidents in student housing facilities. One incident involved burnt food on a stove and the other involved smoke from an overheated compressor. Ferris State University experienced no injuries, deaths or property damage due to fires in student housing in 2012.
On-Campus Student Housing and life safety systems
Ferris State University has a total of 24 on-campus student housing facilities. Residence halls are equipped with fire detection systems and pull box stations. University apartments use local smoke detection systems. All fire life safety systems report directly to the Department of Public Safety’s 24 hour Dispatch personnel.
Mandatory Supervised Fire Drills
The Michigan Fire Prevention Code, Section 29.19, requires all Universities to conduct a minimum of 8 fire drills per year in school dormitories. Ferris State University conducts fire drills 12 times during the academic school year.
When fire alarms are activated, including during scheduled fire drills, all occupants must evacuate the building. Residents must wait outside the building until a member of the hall staff indicates they may return. Failure to evacuate during a fire alarm is a serious violation of University policy.
Residence Hall Fire Safety & Security
The University is committed to maintaining a healthy and safe environment in our residential communities, while respecting and preserving individual rights. In order to manage this delicate balance, the University has developed policies and procedures with which all residents should be familiar. Housing policies are subject to change/revision. Please reference the on-line student handbook for the most current policies.
Included below are the expectations regarding the use of personal and University facilities, as they relate to fire safety issues. The University recognizes that these policies may cause individual inconvenience. The policies are intended to protect the health and welfare of the larger community. Any activity that could potentially compromise fire safety in the halls is a violation of policy. Withholding information/evidence concerning a fire is a serious offense.
3. Flammable Materials and Incendiary Devices
4. Room/Building Safety
5. Fire Safety
- Covering or otherwise obstructing a smoke detector is prohibited.
- Any activity that could potentially compromise fire safety in the halls is a violation of policy.
- Withholding information/evidence concerning a fire is a serious offense.
Smoking is not permitted in residence halls or University Apartments. Students must stand well away (minimum of 25 feet) from all buildings while smoking outside.
7. Health and Safety Checks
Hall Staff are required to do room checks on a periodic basis for the purpose of making sure no fire hazards, health and safety, or violations of University rules exist. For a complete listing of Housing Service Regulations and Standards see Section V, sub-section A, of the Student Handbook.
Health and Safety checks are performed one or more times per semester. These are done to help assure healthy and safe living environments for all residents. Violations of Health and Safety standards include, but are not limited to, overloaded electrical circuits, grease buildup in and around stoves, unsanitary conditions, pets, etc. Smoke detectors are tested during health and safety checks. Residents are expected to test smoke detectors monthly and immediately report any that are not working properly. Removing the battery of a smoke detector, for any purpose other than to immediately replace it with a new one, is a serious violation.
Education & Training
Residence Hall staff receive training at the beginning of the school year on how to conduct fire and tornado drills. Students are given fire and tornado safety instructions at their mandatory floor meeting on the first day of classes.
In 2012, 201 faculty, staff and students were trained in Fire Safety and Extinguisher Training.
A complete listing of University Housing Policies, Procedures and University Discipline Procedures can be found at the following link: http://www.ferris.edu/htmls/administration/StudentAffairs/Studenthandbook/
Future Improvement in Fire Safety
Ferris State University is committed to making improvements in fire safety in student housing as deemed necessary.
Information included in this publication is in compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Statistics Act.
Ferris State University will be a national leader in providing opportunities for innovative teaching and learning in career-oriented, technological and professional education.
Ferris State is an affirmative action/equal opportunity institution and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, age, sex, marital status, handicap, political affiliation or belief.
Ferris State University Off-Campus Locations
Alpena Community College
Grand Rapids Community College
Ferris State University College of Pharmacy
Kendall College or Art & Design
Lansing Community College
Macomb Community College
Catherine Belkowski, Outreach
Coordinator South Campus
R-Building, Room 146
14500 E 12 Mile Road
Warren, MI 48088
Mott Community College
Muskegon Community College
Northwestern Michigan College
Southwestern Michigan College
Wayne County Community College District
Last updated: 09-30-2014
1319 Cramer Circle
Big Rapids MI 49307-2128