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Campus Safety Concerns

Safety Tips for On-Campus Living


Common Sense
Keep your front door and bedroom door locked at all times.    

Protecting Yourself Against Acquaintance Rape

What Every Woman Should Know

  • Know you sexual intention and limits.  You have the right to say “No” to any unwanted sexual contact at any time.  If you are uncertain about what you want, ask the man to respect your feelings.
  • Communicate your limits firmly and directly.  If you say “No”, say it like you mean it.  Don’t give mixed messages.  Back up your words with a firm tone of voice and clear body language.
  • Don’t rely on “ESP” to get your message across.  Don’t assume that your date will automatically know how you feel, or will eventually “get the message” without your having to tell him.
  • Remember that some men think that drinking heavily, the way you are dressed, or going to a man’s room indicates a willingness to have sex.  Be especially careful to communicate your limits and intentions clearly in such situations.
  • Listen to your gut feelings.  If you feel uncomfortable or think you may be at risk, leave that situation immediately and go to a safe place.
  • Don’t be afraid to “make waves” if you feel threatened.  If you feel you are being pressured or coerced into sexual activity against your will, don’t hesitate to state your feelings and get out of the situation.  Better a few minutes of social awkwardness or embarrassment than the trauma of sexual assault.
  • Attend large parties with friends you can trust.  Agree to “look out” for one another.  Try to leave with a group, rather than alone or with someone you don’t know very well.

What Every Man Should Know

  • Listen carefully.  Take time to hear what the woman is saying.  If you feel she is not being direct or is giving you a “mixed message”, ask for clarification.
  • Don’t fall for the common stereotype that when a woman says “No” she really means “Yes”. “No” means “No”.  If a woman says “No” to sexual contact, believe her and stop.
  • Remember that date rape is a crime.  It is never acceptable to use force in sexual situations, no matter what the circumstances. 
  • Don’t make assumptions about a woman’s behavior.  Don’t automatically assume that a woman wants to have sex just because she drinks heavily, agrees to go to your room, or because of the way she is dressed.  Don’t assume that just because a woman has had sex with you previously she is willing to have sex with you again. Also, don’t assume that just because a woman consents to kissing or other sexual intimacies she is willing to have sexual intercourse.
  • Be aware that having sex with a woman who is mentally or physically incapable of giving consent is rape.  If you have  sex with a woman who is drugged, intoxicated, passed out, incapable of saying “No”, or unaware of what is happening around her, you may be guilty of rape.
  • Be especially careful in group situations.  Be prepared to resist pressure from friends to participate in violent or criminal acts.
  • “Get Involved” if you believe someone is at risk.  If you see a woman in trouble at a party or a male friend using or pressuring a woman, don’t be afraid to intervene.

Please call Campus Police (385-6144) or Counseling (385-6127) if you have concerns about your safety.


Alcohol and Drug Abuse

People under the influence of drugs/alcohol are more likely to be involved in acts of vandalism, theft, violence, and sexual assault.  You are responsible for your actions even if alcohol and/or drugs are involved.  To avoid putting yourself or others in a position that could cause problems, consider not using drugs and alcohol.  If you choose to use alcohol:

  • Make responsible decisions about use:  space drinks, eat a meal before or along with drinking, and limit the number of drinks.
  • Never pressure another individual to participate in the use of alcohol or drugs.
  • Know why you choose to use alcohol.
  • Learn the facts about alcohol and drug use and abuse.
  • Get help if you have any problems with alcohol or drugs.
  • Don’t apologize or make excuses for not using alcohol or drugs.
  • If you are experiencing a drug or alcohol problem, contact Melinda Anthony-Spolski (385-6127) or Health Services (385-6248).


Campus Alcohol/Marijuana/Narcotics Policy

Penn State University upholds the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania regarding alcohol and controlled substances.

Penn State Schuylkill does not permit students, regardless of age, to be possession of any alcoholic beverages within the premises; namely, buildings cars, parking lots, as well as all functions sponsored on campus.  Possession, use, or traffic in marijuana and narcotics is also prohibited on Penn State Campuses.

Students who violate the University Policy regarding alcohol and drug possession will be subject to referral for disciplinary sanctions.  Sanctions may include separation or suspension from the University and/or termination of housing privileges if found with alcohol.

In addition to the Penn State Judicial Affairs sanctions, students will be arrested by Police Services and subject to the penalties of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Did you know that your driving privilege will be suspended if you are convicted of:

Lying about your age
Purchasing, consuming, possessing, or transporting alcohol
Carrying a false identification card
Your driving privileges will be suspended for:
First Offense                                       90 days
Second Offense                                  1 year
Third & Subsequent Offenses              2 years

Individuals who do not have a driver’s license will be ineligible to apply for a learner’s permit for the time period of the suspension.  Suspensions for individuals under 16 years of age do not begin until their 16th birthday.

In addition to serving a suspension, a $25.00 restoration fee must be paid before your license will be returned or your application for a learner’s permit considered.  After your driving privilege is restored, your driving record will show five points, regardless of the number of points which appeared on the record before your driving privilege was suspended.

In addition to a fine of up to $500, the police are also required to notify your parents.  The court may the  require you to be evaluated to determine the extent of your involvement with alcohol and may require you to successfully complete a program of alcohol intervention, intervention or counseling.

Adults who buy alcohol for persons under 21-even their own children– as well as anyone who makes or sells false identification will receive a mandatory fine of $1,000 for their first offense and $2,500 for the second or subsequent offenses.

You do not have to be in or near a car, have a driver’s license or even be old enough to drive for this law to apply.  Merely being caught with a fake ID, drinking, being intoxicated, transporting alcohol or having alcohol in your possession will result in your driving privilege being suspended.

Tobacco Policy

All forms of tobacco usage are prohibited in the Nittany Apartments and University buildings.  You may smoke outside on the picnic patios or in front of the building.  A fine of $75 will be assessed if the tobacco policy is violated.

Protect Your Personal Property

Theft is the most common crime on American campuses.  Thieves will steal any goods that are left unattended and unprotected.Lock you doors at all times, even when you are sleeping in your room or just step out for a moment. Keep valuables in a safe place.  Never prop open doors. Report broken locks, windows, doors, and lights. Always lock your car and bike.

Campus Weapons Policy

The Schuylkill Campus Advisory Board prohibits the possession, carrying or use of any gun or other offensive weapon on Advisory Board property except in the case of authorized law officers and other persons specifically permitted by the Advisory Board.

Any member of the Nittany Apartments who violates these prohibitions shall be subject to discipline, including the possibility of separation from the University. 

You can find out more details on the University policies on guns, bow and arrows, knives and other weapons in the University police manual, under section SY-12.  You can also get more details by calling Police Services at (570) 385-6144.

There are some limited exceptions to this policy, such as when weapons are used in a course of instructions.  Make sure you understand the policy.

All federal, state, and local laws concerning the possession of guns are applicable on Advisory Board property, in addition to Penn State’s own restrictions. 

In addition, other weapons besides guns are prohibited.  You may be separated from Penn State and the Schuylkill Campus Advisory Board Nittany Apartments  in found in the possession of stun guns, B-B guns, dart guns, spear guns, certain knives, explosive devices, striking instruments such as blackjacks and metal knuckles, martial arts weapons and other weapons. 

The possession of guns and other weapons is currently receiving significant national attention.  This notice is a reminder to those who spend time on Penn State campuses that possession of guns and other weapons on University property has long been prohibited.

If you are found in possession of a gun or other weapons on University property, you risk ending your college career or employment.

Personal Assault

It is important for all people to take precautions against personal assault.  Use common sense and work together to avoid hazardous situations.

  • Don’t walk or jog alone.
  • Stay near lighted areas and avoid shortcuts and isolated areas.
  • Be aware of you surroundings.
  • If you are being followed, cross the street, change directions, go to a well-lit area, or anywhere there are people.
  • Don’t take risks.
  • Keep your doors locked at all times.
  • Never prop doors open.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Sexual intimacy can be a warm, caring, exciting experience for those who choose to be sexually active.  Sex also requires responsibility.  All sexually active people should take precautions to protect themselves and their partners from sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s).  Be smart and stay healthy.

  • Educate yourself about STD’s and what you can do to make sex safer.
  • Respect yourself and your partner.  Talk about sex, know how to protect yourself.
  • Take precautions consistently– every time!
  • Agree only to have “safe sex”.
  • Make careful choices about sexual activity.
  • If you think you have been exposed to an STD, it is important to get tested and treated immediately.  Don’t let your feelings stop you from getting help.
  • No one is immune to STD’s.  Everyone who is sexually active can get or transmit an STD.  It is not who you are, but what you do, that makes you vulnerable.
  • Remember that alcohol affects your judgment in making responsible decisions about sexual activity.

For more information, please contact Health Services (385-6248).

Channels of Communication

If a resident student encounters a problem which he/she is unable to resolve, he/she should seek the assistance of the Resident Assistant.  If the RA is unable to render a solution, a floor meeting may or may not be conducted on the issue if the problem is in regards to the community.  The RA may also consult with the Residence Life Coordinator,  to discuss options towards resolution.  If the issue requires disciplinary counseling, it will be referred to the Office of Judicial Affairs.