How to stay safe at UNIVERSITY
By Rebecca Maher on October 27th, 2023
Staying safe is a top priority for all of us, no matter where we are. Whether you’re a university student or not, it’s important to remember the basics of looking after ourselves.
In this week’s blog, we have put together a guide to our top tips on how to stay safe at university.
Firstly, avoid walking home alone. Late night study sessions at the library can’t be helped sometimes. Arrange to meet friends for study sessions, so you can travel home together. If you’re heading home from a night out, stay within your group of friends and keep your wits about you. Don’t take shortcuts, even if it means getting home a little later.
There are so many benefits to living in student accommodation, with extra safety and security being one of many. For example, if you’re a Downing Students’ resident, all residences are well-lit and centrally located, meaning you’re never too far from your university home, with transport links always nearby. Many of our residents feel safe and secure using our fob system, which requires fobbing in and out of main doors, buildings, and lift areas, so nobody externally can gain entry.
A good idea to secure your belongings while at university is to have them insured. For instance, if you’re a Downing Students’ resident, we are partnered with insurance specialists Endsleigh insurance. Your items are covered by insurance, with the option to upgrade your valuables coverage. When you download the Endsleigh app during your stay with us, you have access to so many great perks, including 24/7 access to a wellbeing service, advice, counselling, and financial support.
We have all been there, eager to enjoy a night out with university friends and neighbours, playing drinking games like ‘ring of fire’ at pre-drinks. But make sure you begin your night by eating something substantial before the night unfolds. Nobody wants to be the one doing anything embarrassing after all! Never leave your drinks unattended. Guard your drinks and do not accept drinks from people you don’t know too well. If you need the toilet, either take your drink with you or get rid of it.
Watch out for each other and stay together in groups where possible, especially when traveling from one place to the next. If you notice a friend acting in a way that seems out of character, take notice. If they’re overly intoxicated or seem to need assistance, get them to a safe place and support them.
If you suspect that a friend has been drugged or needs medical attention for any other reason, call a resident assistant, campus security, or 999.
Keep an eye out at a cash machine for signs of interference before using it. Never accept a stranger’s help when using a cash machine. Be aware of people crowding around you, and if you can, draw out money in the day. Never let your bank or credit cards out of sight in shops and restaurants to prevent cloning.
When shopping online, check the website for a padlock or unbroken key icon. Websites with ‘https:’ in the URL are secure, but if you don’t see the final ‘s’ when you come to checkout, stop the transaction immediately. The VeriSign Trust seal means that the website company’s identity has been verified, and the website has passed a daily malware scan.
Stay safe and keep your wits about you!