Policy SY03 EMERGENCIES INVOLVING STUDENTS

Policy Steward: Assistant Vice President for Police and Public Safety

Contents:

  • Purpose:
  • Emergency Assistance:
  • Reporting Emergencies:
  • Notifications to Families of Students Involved in Emergencies
  • Emergencies Involving Students While Engaged in University Travel
  • Reporting Accidents or Illnesses
  • Further Information

  • PURPOSE:

    To outline the University's policy on emergencies involving students and establish notification guidelines for dealing with emergencies involving students.

    EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE:

    It is the policy of the University to render emergency assistance to students who are seriously injured, suffer serious illness, or experience other personal emergencies while attending the University, and to notify and assist the families of students who have died, are seriously ill or injured, are missing or experience other personal emergency situations.

    REPORTING EMERGENCIES:

    The designated Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at University Park, or the Director of Student Affairs at other locations, is to be notified immediately of all emergencies involving students. He/she has the authority and the responsibility for coordinating the efforts made by the University to assist the student and the student's family.

    Situations involving students which are to be reported include, but are not limited to, the death* of a student; life-threatening injuries resulting from attempted suicides, fires, explosions, traffic crashes or other accidents; life threatening illnesses; and missing students. When emergencies involving students occur within on-campus housing units and are known to the Residence Life staff, the Residence Life staff will be responsible for notifying either the designated Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at University Park, or the Director of Student Affairs at other locations, according to established Student Affairs protocols.

    * NOTEExcept for deaths occurring in a medical facility due to natural causes, the investigation of any death on a Penn State campus will be the responsibility of the law enforcement agency serving the campus and the county coroner. In these situations, the police and the coroner will be in-charge of the situation until the investigation is completed. The coroner will determine the most appropriate person to notify the next of kin and the means of making such notification. This notification may be made by hospital staff, police, or, in some cases, a representative of Student Affairs or other University official.

    The designated Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at University Park will have the responsibility for notifying the following persons or departments about student emergencies as soon as possible:

    1. Vice President for Student Affairs - The Vice President for Students Affairs will notify the President and other senior executives as appropriate.

    2. Vice President for Strategic Communications and/or the Director of News and Media Relations– to coordinate and field any media notification or inquiries.

    3. Student Affairs Units - These notifications shall be made in accordance with established Student Affairs protocols.

    4. Office of International Students and Scholars - when the student involved is a foreign national.

    5. Academic Areas - The Office of the Dean of the college in which the student is enrolled shall be notified as appropriate.

    6. University Police - The University Police will coordinate with State Police and local police to locate missing students and make emergency notifications.

    7. Department of Environmental Health and Safety - when the cause of a death or injury on the campus was related to the physical environment.

    8. Risk Management - when appropriate.

    9. Offices of Financial Aid and Registrar - when appropriate.

    10. Office of Housing and Food Services and Residence Life - when the student resides in on-campus student housing.

    At non-University Park locations, the Director of Student Affairs will have the responsibility for notifying the following persons or departments about student emergencies as soon as possible:

    1. Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs - The designated Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at University Park will make the notifications listed above as appropriate when notified of an emergency involving students at a non-University Park location.

    2. Campus Chancellor

    3. Campus Academic Affairs Officer

    4. Campus Police or Security Unit - The police or security unit will coordinate with State Police and local police to locate missing students and make emergency notifications.

    5. Campus Director of University Relations – to coordinate and field any media inquiries. The Campus University Relations director will in turn notify the Office of the Vice President for Strategic Communications.

    6. Department of Environmental Health and Safety - when the cause of a death or injury on the campus was related to the physical environment.

    7. Risk Management - when appropriate.

    8. Campus Office of Housing and Food Services and Residence Life - when the student resides in on-campus student housing.

    9. Campus Office of Financial Aid and Registrar - when appropriate.

    NOTIFICATIONS TO FAMILIES OF STUDENTS INVOLVED IN EMERGENCIES:

    The designated Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs at University Park, or the Director of Student Affairs at other locations, shall be responsible for insuring that the family of a student involved in an emergency is notified of the emergency and shall coordinate assistance to the family of the student on behalf of the University. In the case of the death of a student, notification of the next of kin is the responsibility of the coroner. Any death notifications will be done at the direction of the county coroner.

    EMERGENCIES INVOLVING STUDENTS WHILE ENGAGED IN UNIVERSITY TRAVEL:

    Whenever a student is involved in an emergency situation while traveling on a University sponsored trip, e.g. trips with student organizations and athletic teams, the staff member or other person in-charge of the activity shall contact the University Police at University Park (814-863-1111). This office is open 24 hours a day. The University Police shall notify the designated Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs of the emergency. The staff member or other person in-charge of the activity should also make appropriate notifications within his/her college or administrative unit. The University Police at University Park also serve the point of contact after normal business hours for emergencies involving students enrolled in Education Abroad programs.

    REPORTING ACCIDENTS OR ILLNESSES:

    After the necessary initial assistance has been given to an injured or suddenly ill person, an immediate report of the circumstances should be made as specified below.

    1. At University Park :

    2. At Non-University Park Locations:

    FURTHER INFORMATION:

    For questions, additional detail, or to request changes to this policy, please contact University Police & Public Safety.


    Effective Date: May 26, 2011
    Date Approved: May 25, 2011
    Date Published: May 26, 2011 (Editorial change, August 21, 2014)

    Most recent changes:

    Revision History (and effective dates):

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