Whether it’s keeping students secure within campus limits or protecting them from surrounding safety threats off-campus, it is crucial that higher education institutions have a 24/7 security plan in place to keep students, staff, and visitors safe.

A growing Pennsylvania college was looking for a way to stay engaged with the surrounding community, while also addressing the potential safety issues that accompany a large-city atmosphere. The biggest concern for campus officials was the small crimes that were committed by unauthorized visitors on campus, including car break-ins, vandalism and protests on the premises. To determine the best way to communicate with faculty and students during unexpected events or emergencies, the school needed to partner with a systems integrator who could help secure the desired campus expansion.

Integrated security systems to improve student safety

Over the years the institution had become more integrated with the surrounding city, expanding its footprint by adding several dorms, an arts center, student life buildings and other classroom buildings. In order to make sure internal and external safety issues were taken care of, the college built upon their existing 20-year partnership with Johnson Controls to provide safety technologies that were accessible across the campus, from student dorms to education facilities.

The project started with upgrading the campus fire systems with addressable technology and voice communication, and Johnson Controls partnered with an external third party to provide campus-wide mass notification technologies in the event of an emergency. Additionally, electronic access control technologies were installed within the residential and classroom buildings on campus to prevent unauthorized entry into facilities. All of the technologies are completely connected and integrated with video camera systems, providing campus officials with footage from across the campus to help address threats.

Technology upgrades leads to security efficiency

By upgrading safety technology and building on its long-term relationship with Johnson Controls, the Pennsylvania college has brought together their road map of fire, security and life-safety technologies in one integrated strategy to keep students, staff, and visitors safe. Security and operations teams are more efficient as they respond to events since they’re armed with more detailed information from the alarms, video surveillance and access control technologies. Campus officials can also use this data to take a proactive approach to protecting the campus from the unexpected.

At Johnson Controls, we understand how a truly integrated security strategy can support colleges and universities, from the design process through maintaining the technology. Learn how to make your institution a safer environment for all students, staff, and visitors here.