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Policy Steward: Vice President for Administration


  • Purpose
  • Scope
  • Policy
  • Responsibilities
  • Further Information
  • Cross References


    To establish a policy concerning an all-hazards emergency management program at The Pennsylvania  State University, prescribing actions that must be undertaken for the safety of students, faculty, staff, and visitors, and for the protection of infrastructure, critical assets and services, compliant with applicable federal and state laws and regulations.  The framework of this policy includes program development and maintenance during normal business, activation in response to an emergency, and return to routine operations.


    This policy applies to all University locations.  In accordance with this Policy, each budget executive, is responsible for preparations and performance in their respective units.


    The University will create and maintain an Emergency Management program that integrates a campus-based, all-hazards emergency management effort.  The program will use the framework of the four phases of emergency management: planning, mitigation, response and recovery.  There will be a unified Emergency Management program for the University, but each Campus, College and Administrative unit must develop its own plans in support of the University program. In most cases these plans will consist of business continuity plans, but other plans may be required as applicable.

    An Emergency is defined as an event (expected or unexpected) that places life, property, or the environment in danger, and requires more than the routine public safety response.


    The Office of Emergency Management, under the direction of the Assistant Vice President for Public Safety and Police Services, is responsible for:

    The Senior Vice President for Finance and Business, the President, Provost and the Vice President for Administration, shall constitute the Emergency Management Executive Policy Group and provide subject matter policy and direction for the entire University. The Policy Group is also responsible for informing the Board of Trustees and providing timely status reports, as appropriate. The Senior Vice President for Finance and Business (or a delegated substitute in his/her absence) is responsible for declaring a state of emergency.  He/she may (depending on the circumstances) elect to exercise authority over an emergency at any University location, or to delegate responsibility for managing the situation to a Budget Executive. The Director of the Office of Emergency Management (or his/her designee) will lead the efforts in the Emergency Operations Center and implement the Emergency Operations Plan, as appropriate.  The Senior Vice President for Finance and Business may direct the replacement of the Director of Emergency Management.  The Senior Vice President for Finance and Business may also direct the opening or closing of the Emergency Operations Center.

    The Emergency Management Core Team shall oversee the function of maintaining a high state of readiness for emergencies University-wide and ensuring that the Emergency Management Group is prepared to respond and lead as needed.

    The Emergency Management Group is responsible for remaining updated about the state of the University’s readiness, and for responding if called to participate in the University’s Emergency Operations Center if activated.

    The Budget Executives are responsible for:

    1. Ensuring that each operational unit under their area has developed, implemented and tested an emergency operation plan, and business continuity plan which have been reviewed and approved by the Office of Emergency Management; and
    2. Conducting training in their unit to ensure the operability of the plan and the awareness and responsiveness of faculty and staff.


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


    Other Policies in this Manual and external regulations should also be referenced, especially the following:

    SY01 - Environmental Health and Safety Policy

    SY03 - Emergencies Involving Students

    SY05 - Persons, Other Than Students or Employees, Who Are Injured or Become Ill on University Property

    SY28 - Emergency Evacuations and Fire Drills - Residence Halls

    Homeland Security Presidential Directive 5, Management of Domestic Incidents

    PEMA, Title 35 Health and Safety, Chapter 5, Emergency Management

    Higher Education Reauthorization Act of 2009

    Effective Date: September 13, 2011
    Date Approved: September 12, 2011
    Date Published: September 13, 2011 (Editorial changes- February 27, 2014)

    Most Recent Changes:

    Revision History (and effective dates):

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