Northwestern launches emergency alert system

Northwestern College has launched a campus-wide desktop security notification system, NWC Alert. In the event of campus emergencies and severe weather warnings, NWC Alert will place a text crawl or flashing alert on the computers of all students, faculty and staff at the school to provide them with information about the situation and actions they should take.

“Campus security is a very serious issue, and we are pleased to have
NWC Alert in place as one of many important tools to help notify students and staff in an efficient manner,” says Perry Krosschell, director of campus safety and security. “NWC Alert will help us keep everyone safe and secure while the campus safety team takes the necessary steps to protect the area.”

The new system offers Northwestern officials the ability to send instant alerts to everyone on campus or just to targeted groups, such as residents of a particular dorm or campus security student volunteers, depending upon the situation. NWC Alert also provides users access to current National Weather Service information such as local and national radar, as well as severe weather safety tips, phone numbers to call in case of an emergency, and campus news.

Northwestern students, faculty and staff are required to install NWC Alert on their computers and will be prevented from logging onto the campus computer network unless they’ve downloaded the program. The campus is surrounded by wireless hotspots, ensuring that most of the campus community can be alerted at a moment’s notice.

The alert system utilizes ActiveAccess, a desktop content delivery platform offered by BIA Information Network. ActiveAccess is used by corporations such as Clear Channel and American Business Media and universities such as Penn State and George Washington University to quickly communicate with constituents.