Do you feel safe where you study?

On October 8, 2014 in Chardon Building, four panelists talked about the security in the University of Mayagüez Puerto Rico. The panelists were Gustavo Cortina Rodríguez Director of Quality of Life Department of UPRM; Jesiel Diaz Colón, President of the General Student Council of the UPRM, Jorge Barbosa, lieutenant and supervisor of the night shift of the UPRM police; and Carlos Marrero, director of the Department of Transit and College Security of the UPRM.

Panelists talked about the new security that are currently under evaluation to be implemented. They also gave tips of how to protect yourself and prevent these particular situations and other useful information about security on campus.

Interest about  security in the UPRM increased when a professor was assaulted on August 10, 2014 in the campus.  After this incident the Dean of Administration proposed to put cameras around campus.

In response the Student Council did a survey via internet to ask students if they agree with the plan, and 2000 students, “88 percent agree”, said Díaz Colón .

Lieutenant Barbosa added an example that happened eight to ten years ago when in the building Stefani started the crimes in the labs, they put cameras to control it and this eliminated some percent of them. Cameras are not going to solve the problem but it will helped to clarify cases.

Like these cameras have some positive effects similarly have the negatives effects, like the high cost of this product. Like Barbosa added “ that the cost that the university is going to spend to do that I think is a lot and I don’t think they’re going to spend that much money in the campus.”  Moreover the director of the Department of Transit and College Security said that the university has reduced personnel in 2006 when there were 72 security guards and right now there are 58 security guards, 23 of them are in the shift of the morning, in the afternoon there are 18 security guards and in the evening there are 17.  Also they are in evaluation to add three or four more officers.

Right know the new administrations of the university are giving more priority to the security of the Campus.  The President of the Student Council  mentioned many suggestions that are already are being evaluated like offering a 24 hour study areas, concentrating evening classes in a building, offering trolley services the days of late night exams, and keeping the gates open and guarded on those same days.

In fact UPRM is very big in territory and 58 security guards are not sufficient for approximately 15,000  students and workers. And the security of the university is not only responsibility of the security guards or the administration it is a concern of the students.

Actually there are statics that the buildings that are reported more cases is around the Sánchez-Hidalgo, Nursing building and the engineering (Stefani) building confirm Gustavo Cortina. Also the crime situations happens commonly at night that’s why Campus Security offers some tools to the students for them to use whenever they don’t feel safe; part of them are the campus escort services in which you call them and they can give you a ride to your car or any building in the campus inclusive they can give you a ride out of the UPRM territory with the permission of the rector.

The director Marrero mentioned that the campus security numbers are active 24 hours which can be dialed for either reporting a crime or any other confidence.  Also if the student is confronting the situations the most recommended advice that they agreed is to preserved your life, don’t fight, don’t do anything against the will of the person that is trying to commit the crime.  Just give them whatever you have to prevent further acts.

At the press conference of  UPRM security issues,  from left to  right, Lieutenant Barbosa, Director Carlos Marrero, President of the Counselor Jesiel Diaz and the Director of Quality of Life Gustavo Cortina.

At the press conference of UPRM security issues, from left to right, Lieutenant Barbosa, Director Carlos Marrero, President of the Counselor Jesiel Diaz and the Director of Quality of Life Gustavo Cortina.

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