Campus safety FAQ

How does the Wayne State University Police Department (WSUPD) monitor and respond to safety issues on campus?

  • Wayne State University police officers patrol campus and the surrounding area 24/7 to ensure safety and respond to any concerns.
  • More than 2,000 cameras are located inside and outside of campus buildings, and many of these are monitored in real time by the WSUPD. The WSUPD can also access and monitor traffic cameras surrounding campus.
  • Emergency "blue light" telephones are located throughout campus. When a caller picks up the line, the WSUPD immediately sees the caller on camera and a flashing light identifies their position.
  • In the event of an emergency, the WSUPD can remotely lock doors to all classroom and academic buildings. The system is currently being upgraded to allow the WSUPD to lock individual buildings or different zones on campus.
  • The WSUPD is located just off campus and can respond to on-campus emergencies in as little as 90 seconds.
  • The WSUPD regularly trains for a variety of scenarios including active shooter situations on its own and with other law enforcement agencies, including the Detroit Police Department, Wayne County Sheriff's Office, FBI and the Department of Homeland Security.

How does the university prepare for and respond to a crisis?

  • A core response team has been established that is chaired by the chief of staff and includes members of the university administration and the chief of police. Department heads may be ad-hoc members if their area is impacted.
  • This team meets regularly to consider a variety of major events and crises and conduct simulations.
  • When a crisis is reported, the team immediately investigates the situation, coordinates resources, and notifies the campus of steps and precautions to take.
  • Members of Wayne State's police department and Crisis Management Team conduct tabletop simulations and give presentations about a variety of potential crises to departments around campus to continually redefine and improve crisis preparedness.

How will I be informed if a crisis happens?

  • Notifications are sent from the Wayne State University Police Department via text message and email. As a member of the WSU community, you are automatically signed up for these notifications. 
  • Members outside of the WSU community (those without an AccessID) can opt in to receiving Wayne State Alerts by texting WAYNESTATEALERT to 77295. 
  • Official university messages and information will be posted at during an active crisis. 
  • Information will also be posted on the main university social media channels and shared with external media.

How are new employees and students made aware of how the university’s safety resources?

The new employee or student's first exposure to our crime awareness efforts occurs during orientation.These mandatory orientations provide new students and employees with the policies and procedures to report criminal actions or other emergencies on campus, discuss the security of and access to various campus facilities, describe the campus law enforcement resources available to them for routine and emergency services, and discuss the common types of crime that can occur on our campus and the necessary steps that should be taken so as not to fall victim to these crimes. Specific orientation sessions are held for new students, transfer students, new staff and faculty.

Wayne State provides an in-person sexual misconduct prevention presentation at all first-year and incoming transfer student orientations. This presentation includes contact information for the Title IX director, deputy Title IX directors and the Wayne State Police, as well as information on where to report and where to obtain support and resources.

For all Wayne State students, the university offers an online training module regarding sexual misconduct and prevention.

For students living in the residence hall, each year the Office of Housing and Residential Life publishes a guide that contains detailed information about residence hall and apartment policies; services and amenities; check-in and check-out procedures; safety, security, and emergency procedures; personal emergency planning; and policies, procedures, and general information. The guide also contains a list of important phone numbers.

What should I do?

  • Good communication begins with you. If you are aware of a problem, do not assume someone else has reported it.
  • When a crisis occurs, contact the WSUPD at 313-577-2222. 
  • Be aware of fire alarm pull stations, blue light phones and evacuation routes for buildings you are in regularly. 
  • Keep an eye on your text messages, email and for the latest updates.  
  • Review our campus safety resources, which include several helpful tools and links to a variety of campus departments, including our "Run, Hide, Fight" video.
  • Sign up for training offered by the WSUPD on everything from active shooters to self-defense. Lts. Rana El Jaafari and Bob Hack can be contacted directly to schedule active shooter training, and a list of safety-related programs and workshops is available on our Campus Safety website.  
  • Each year, students are encouraged to prepare a personal preparedness plan. Information about these plans, including instructions and a checklist to assist students in creating their plans.
  • Each university department has posted in a visible place the Wayne State University Emergency and Safety Procedures flipchart for immediate reference. This flipchart is also available online at the website of the Office of Risk Management (ORM) and on the WSUPD website.

What is the evaluation procedure for students living in housing in case of a fire?

Established fire evacuation procedures have been developed and apply to all on-campus residence halls and apartments:

A fire plan is posted on the back of each residence hall and apartment door. Please read this plan and become familiar with your evacuation route. For additional copies of the plan, please contact your community director.

All residents must immediately leave the facility when an alarm sounds. Treat all alarms as real emergencies. Familiarize yourself with the exits, sounds and procedures for evacuating a building. Get to know your exit routes before there is an emergency. If an alarm sounds, please do the following:

  • Put on a coat and hard-soled shoes, quickly.
  • Take a towel with you to prevent smoke inhalation.
  • Close windows.
  • Check your doorknob and door. If either is hot, do not open your door. If the door and doorknob are cool, exit cautiously and close your unlocked door.
  • Take your keys and OneCard with you.
  • Walk quickly and leave the building via the nearest available exit in your area.
  • Use the stairwells to evacuate (do not use elevators). Once in the stairwell, check to see that the door is closed and proceed down to the first level. Gather at the predetermined outside assembly area away from the residence hall or apartment.
  • DO NOT re-enter the building until a staff member, WSUPD or the fire department tells you it is safe to do so.

At the beginning of each school year (August), the Office of Risk Management conducts hands-on fire safety training with every community director and resident assistant in each of the university’s student housing facilities.