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College Safety Rankings: How Safe is Your College?

In the world of higher education, the well-being and security of students, faculty, and staff hold paramount importance. As academic institutions across the United States try to foster safer environments, it becomes essential to recognize and celebrate those that have made significant strides in reducing crime rates. This blog post delves into  campus crime data, spotlighting colleges that have not only placed a high priority on safety but have demonstrated measurable success as they transitioned back from remote learning to having students back on campus.

College safety

After a comprehensive analysis of college crime rates across the country, using data from the National Center for Education Statistics, we focused on campuses that reported at least 1 crime per 1,000 students. We categorized each institution based on its student population size: small, medium, or large. Our findings highlight remarkable achievements in crime reduction, particularly at Lane College (small), Prairie View A & M University (medium), and Ohio State University-Main Campus (large).  The data includes the most updated published statistics from 2019-2021 and will be updated as newer data becomes available.

In our ongoing effort to enhance transparency and awareness around campus safety, we’ve developed an interactive chart alongside a comprehensive, searchable table that allows you to explore and compare crime rate data across various colleges and universities. By navigating the chart, you can identify trends and outliers at a glance. For a more targeted investigation,  you can search for your institution and find the percentage change. Simply enter the name of your college in the search bar to retrieve the latest crime rate statistics. If you’re unable to find your college, it likely indicates that data was not reported for your institution within the timeframe of our study. These tools are designed to empower students, parents, and educators whether they are trying to make a decision about college or already enrolled in one.

Small Colleges: A Beacon of Safety and Security

Small colleges often boast close-knit communities and personalized education experiences. Yet, the challenge of ensuring campus safety remains paramount. The following small colleges have distinguished themselves not just by fostering an environment conducive to learning, but also by significantly reducing crime rates on campus. These institutions have implemented targeted strategies that have proven effective in enhancing security, demonstrating that safety is a top priority regardless of the size of the student body.

Here are the most improved small sized colleges based on the decrease in crime rates from 2019 to 2021. 

1. Lane College: 82% reduction

2. Harris-Stowe State University: 78% reduction

3. California Institute of Technology: 76% reduction

4. Wheaton College (Massachusetts): 69% reduction

5. Amherst College: 68% reduction

6. Elizabeth City State University: 65% reduction

7. Albion College: 65% reduction

8. Franklin and Marshall College: 64% reduction

9. Trinity College: 59% reduction

10. Illinois College: 58% reduction

Medium Colleges: Creating Safer Spaces Through Innovation

Medium-sized colleges serve a diverse student population and offer a wide range of academic and extracurricular opportunities. Balancing growth with safety, these institutions have embarked on innovative paths to reduce crime rates, leveraging technology, community programs, and proactive policies. Their efforts showcase a commitment to creating safer campuses that support student well-being and academic success. Below are the medium colleges that have made the most significant strides in crime reduction, setting benchmarks for others to follow.

Here are the most improved medium sized colleges based on the decrease in crime rates from 2019 to 2021. 

1. Prairie View A & M University: 44% reduction

2. Grambling State University: 38% reduction

3. Dartmouth College: 29% reduction

4. Rice University: 14% reduction

5. Princeton University: 7% reduction

6. North Carolina Central University: 6% reduction

7. Saint Louis University: 5% reduction

Large Colleges: Leading the Charge in Campus Safety

Large colleges and universities, with their vast campuses and extensive communities, face unique challenges in maintaining safety and security. However, these institutions have risen to the occasion, implementing comprehensive safety measures, community engagement initiatives, and rapid response systems. The large colleges listed below have shown remarkable improvements in reducing crime rates, illustrating the effectiveness of their strategies and their dedication to ensuring a safe educational environment for all students, faculty, and staff.

Here are the most improved large colleges based on the decrease in crime rates from 2019 to 2021. 

Strategies for Success

How did these institutions manage to improve their safety metrics so significantly? While each campus employs its unique approach, common strategies have emerged:

 

  1. Enhanced Surveillance and Security Measures: Many campuses have ramped up their investment in cutting-edge surveillance technology and increased patrols to deter criminal activity.
  1. Education and Awareness Programs: These programs aim to educate the campus community about safety practices and emphasize the importance of reporting suspicious activities.
  2. Strong Community Engagement: Creating a culture where students and staff feel responsible for their safety and that of others fosters a safer campus environment.
  3. Rapid Response and Support Services: Ensuring swift action when incidents occur and providing affected individuals with the necessary support are crucial components of a successful safety strategy.

Looking Forward

The strides made by Lane College, Prairie View A & M University, and Ohio State University in reducing crime and enhancing campus safety are indeed commendable. Nonetheless, the journey toward ultimate campus safety is an ongoing one. It requires relentless effort, regular evaluation, and the constant adaptation of strategies to counter new challenges in campus security.

 

As we applaud the successes of these trailblazers in crime reduction, we also encourage a wider dialogue among all educational institutions. Sharing best practices and learning from one another’s experiences is vital. The overarching goal is to ensure that every member of the academic community can pursue education and personal growth in environments that are not just intellectually stimulating but also safe and secure.

 

By focusing on the most improved institutions, this blog post celebrates the significant progress made in campus safety, underscores the importance of continuous efforts, and invites further collaboration in the spirit of safeguarding our educational spaces.

These institutions have shown notable improvements in enhancing campus safety through a decrease in crime rates. Their efforts underscore the importance of proactive measures, community engagement, and comprehensive safety strategies in creating secure academic environments. ​

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