OU administrators address campus security

Virinder Moudgil, provost and vice president for academic affairs, and Lynne Schaefer, vice president for finance and administration, sent the following letter concerning campus security to Oakland University faculty and staff on Oct. 17:

Recent events here and abroad have lent an air of uncertainty and fear to our everyday lives. Please allow us to take a moment to reassure the entire Oakland University community that we are vigilant and prepared for incidents that may occur related to terrorist activities.

First, let us affirm that we have had no specific threats directed at the campus or any groups or individuals among the campus community. But, as with any emergency, natural or man-made, it pays to be prepared before anything happens. That is the spirit in which this message is delivered.

The recent national focus has been on anthrax, as you know, and the delivery of anthrax through the U.S. Postal system. If any suspicious piece of mail or package arrives in your office, please call the OU Police Department immediately at (248) 370-3331. The OUPD is prepared to answer your call expeditiously and handle situations as they may arise. If there is any doubt about mail you receive, it’s a good idea to err on the safe side.

We have accessed the most up-to-date information about anthrax, and how to handle campus security issues from the Centers for Disease Control  and the FBI , and invite you to visit their Web sites if you want more information.

Additionally, we do not work with anthrax in our research labs. No substances resembling anthrax exist on this campus. If you hear rumors to the contrary, please bring them to our attention immediately.

We also are prepared to mobilize our emergency team if we receive any threats to the safety and security of the campus and its faculty, students and staff. Please report any threats you receive, of any nature, to the OUPD at once.

While we take any threat seriously, we also believe that it is important to conduct business as usual, to the extent that that’s possible. We wish to assure the university community that we have response plans in place to deal with threats and emergency situations. Since the terrible events of Sept. 11, we have been on heightened alert and all campus security measures have been stepped up.

That said, it also is important to avoid overreacting. While we need to be ready for any situation, we also believe it is unlikely that anything will happen on our campus. Still, we ask you to be vigilant and prepared in the event of an emergency.

We will keep you posted as developments warrant. In the meantime, let’s work together to enhance the personal safety of the entire Oakland University community.

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OU addresses parking demand

As the increased demand for parking extends beyond the beginning of fall semester, Oakland University is taking steps to address the parking needs of students, faculty and staff.

“So far this semester, there has been a parking space shortage that we are addressing daily,” said Lynne Schaefer, vice president for finance and administration. “While at most times of the day and week there are adequate parking spaces for our students, spaces available at peak volume times of the day tend not to be as conveniently located as they are accustomed to.”

An updated campus map is being mailed to each student detailing all available campus parking lots. The university also will create a temporary paved lot by mid-November for approximately 170 vehicles south of Pioneer Drive near Library Drive. OU Police will continue to allow parking in temporary lots on designated grassy areas.

For Wednesday matinee performances at Meadow Brook Theatre, OU will no longer reserve lanes in P-1, the main university lot that stretches from South Foundation Hall to Graham Health Center. Instead, theatre patrons will be directed to park in P-3, the lot just north of Graham Health Center.

The university is in the process of hiring a firm to design a campus parking structure that will provide up to an additional 550 parking spaces. The structure will open sometime in fall 2002.

Additional short-term parking solutions also are presently being evaluated. In the meantime, the following suggestions can help minimize the time spent finding a parking space:

Leave early so you can find a parking space and make it to class or work on time. Please keep in mind that peak traffic times on campus are Mondays and Wednesdays between 10 a.m.-1 p.m.

The best lots to find a space when the main lots are full are P-11, across from the George T. Matthews Apartments; P-32, south of Kresge Library; and P-3, north of Graham Health Center, according to OU Police.

Whenever possible, try to carpool with a fellow student, faculty or staff member.

“We appreciate your continued patience and support as the OU community works together to address the problem,” Schaefer said. “We are committed to making your on-campus experience as easy and enjoyable as possible.”

For more information and additional updates on parking related issues, please see the campus parking Web page.

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OU response to national crisis

We have had a number of parents calling with concerns about the safety of students on campus during today’s national terrorist crisis. Please encourage all students you come into contact with to call their parents as soon as possible to assure them that they are safe. Should you see any unusual behavior on campus, please alert the Police (3331) immediately.

If you get calls, please assure callers that:

  • We have the best interests of our students and employees in mind during this tragedy.
  • Classes have been cancelled for today, Tuesday, Sept. 11.
  • The Graham Health Center has counselors on hand for students who need to talk to a professional.
  • The campus is on alert for any possible safety problems.
  • Parents with specific questions should call the Housing Office (for residence hall students — 3570) or the Office of Student Affairs (4200).
  • Any calls from the media should be routed to Media Relations (4346 or 4345).
  • Some campus events are being canceled. Interested persons should call ahead to see if events will proceed as scheduled.
  • This message and further updates will be posted on the university’s Web site, although web traffic is difficult at this time.

Thank you for your cooperation during this difficult period.

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Campus closed as of noon Tuesday, Sept. 11

The university will officially be closed as of noon, Tuesday, Sept. 11, in recognition of the concern for safety and peace of mind of our students, employees and their families during the national tragedy.

All classes and university events are officially canceled as of this time, including all evening and extension classes and all auxiliary activities as well as the women’s volleyball game against Eastern Michigan and men’s soccer game against Western Michigan.

Kresge Library, the Recreation Center, Katke-Cousins and R&S Sharf Golf Courses, Meadow Brook Hall and the Oakland Center also are closed.

Residence Halls will be open, as will Vandenberg Dinning Hall, for on-campus students. The Graham Health Center will remain open for counseling services to students.

The university will be open for business as usual on Wednesday, Sept. 12. Students and employees should call the university hotline to confirm (248) 370-2000, or check the university’s Web site.

Radio and television stations should also contain opening/closing information.

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Parking demand high during first week of classes

With the start of the fall semester, demand for parking has increased significantly on Oakland University’s campus.

Because of demand for spaces in P-1, the main university lot that stretches from South Foundation Hall to Graham Health Center, and the lots south of Kresge Library, Oakland University Police established temporary lots on the adjoining grassy areas. But university police, administrators, students and faculty say that with proper planning, parking doesn’t have to be a problem.

“Parking demand is acute, particularly on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays,” said Lieutenant Mel Gilroy of the OU Police Department. “We’ve got 400 to 500 more students on campus this year. We can fit about 350-400 cars in those temporary lots. But I don’t expect we’ll need those lots after this week.

“Generally speaking, by the middle to end of the second week of classes attendance seems to fall off a little bit and takes off some pressure for parking. We see this pattern year after year.”

University police are doing all they can to help people find parking spaces and keep the lots safe, said Gilroy.

“We know that parking is an issue that the university is addressing with the Parking Committee that was assembled,” he said. “What we’re trying to do is get officers out to inform people of where the alternate parking is, control traffic flow and minimize any problems. We’re also writing citations because we’re obligated to ensure that the parking lots are safe and orderly. We need to make sure people are free to come and go and that emergency vehicles can get through the lots, just in case.”

The best lots to find a parking spot when the main lots are full are P-11, across from the George T. Matthews Apartments; P-32, south of Kresge Library; and P-3, north of Graham Health Center, said Gilroy.

“I’d also suggest that students leave early for class and allow an extra ten minutes to find a parking spot and walk to class,” he said.

OU men’s basketball coach Greg Kampe, who is the chair of the Parking Committee that addresses the daily problems associated with campus parking, said the best advice he can give campus drivers is to have patience.

“We knew parking would be hard with another increase in enrollment,” Kampe said. “But by the second week of school students will have changed schedules and dropped classes, so the parking demand decreases. People also have a better idea by the second week of where to go and where to park. We’re anticipating that a parking structure may be built, but these things take time to plan and build. I’d ask people to please be patient and know that we understand that there’s a problem and we’re doing our best to ensure that this problem is fixed.”

OU’s parking issue has been studied significantly and the campus’ parking needs will be addressed, said Lynne Schaefer, vice president of finance and administration.

“As part of the campus master plan process, we’ve projected our parking needs out for the next 20 years and have a plan in place for addressing those needs over time,” Schaefer said. “We’ll be taking our requests to the Board of Trustees this week to begin planning and designing a parking structure. Last week we saw that everyone has been very patient and good about planning ahead and being flexible about finding a parking spot. We appreciate that as we plan to meet our current and future parking needs.”

One student who has experienced the parking demand at the start of fall and winter semesters is senior psychology major Michelle Adomaitis. She said she plans ahead by leaving home a few minutes earlier than usual during the first week or two of classes.

“On Tuesdays and Thursdays I have a 10 a.m. class, so I left home early at 8:45 a.m. to get a space by Wilson Hall,” Adomaitis said. “My class is in South Foundation Hall, so it was easier to park where I did than try to get a closer spot. I expected the parking crunch at the start of the semester from my experience last fall and winter. And I know the university has formed a parking committee and has been getting suggestions. In past semesters, parking seemed to get better after the first couple of weeks.”

Dikka Berven, Special Instructor of French, teaches classes in South Foundation Hall and has an office in Wilson Hall. She also agreed that people should plan to leave a little earlier and walk a little farther at the start of a semester.

“In the past few years, people have had to park somewhat remotely during the first week or so of classes,” Berven said. “But everyone has to plan to come a little bit earlier. I think after the first couple of weeks the parking situation will sort itself out.”

For an overview of campus parking areas and their relation to campus buildings, please see the Oakland University campus map.

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Child seat safety program offered at OU

Without knowing it, parents may be putting their children in harms way every time they take a drive.

In 1999 alone, 2,008 children ages 15 and under were killed in accidents nationwide – 56 in Michigan, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. More than half of those children were completely unrestrained. Among the children that were buckled up, approximately 85 percent were incorrectly restrained.

Oakland University Police Officer Troy A. Scott is offering a program to help parents save the lives of their children. Scott, one of the few certified child passenger safety technicians in the country, will be demonstrating how to properly choose and install child seats on Monday, July 30, from 2 to 7 p.m. at the Lowry Child Center.

Sponsored by the International Center for Injury Protection, the demonstration will cover infant-only and convertible/toddler safety seats as well as booster seats for older children. The public is invited to attend.

For more information on the program, please call the Oakland University Police Department at (248) 370-3331.

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OU Recreation Center staff saves life

OU Recreation Center staff members acted quickly to help save a man’s life after he suffered a heart attack while playing racquetball at the center.

Paul Angott, 54, was playing racquetball May 4 when he experienced chest pain and shortness of breath before collapsing on the court.

Building Supervisor Scott McColley and OU student Mike Thom first arrived at the scene and checked Angott, who was unconscious but breathing. Building Supervisor Michelle VanTrump then summoned EMS through the OU Police Department, which also dispatched an officer. Campus Recreation Facility Coordinator Joel Nieusma called Terri Eudy, assistant director of campus recreation, aquatics and safety training, for assistance.

Eudy said Angott was unconscious but breathing when she first saw him. However, when he later stopped breathing and had no pulse, she performed mouth-to-mouth resuscitation then CPR. Terry Ross, an off-duty OU police officer, joined Eudy and assisted with CPR.

Eudy then used a recently installed Automated External Defibrillator (AED) unit to administer three shocks to Angott, whereupon his breathing and circulation were restored.

“I was calm and focused on opening his airway and then performing CPR after he went into cardiac arrest, then employing the AED unit,” Eudy said. “The most poignant part for me was looking up at his friend, who was teary-eyed, after we had revived Paul. That part got to me emotionally.”

Emergency medical technicians from Auburn Hills Fire and Rescue and EMS arrived shortly after Angott started breathing again and took him to St. Joseph Mercy-Oakland in Pontiac, where an emergency angioplasty was performed.

“I was incredibly lucky,” said Angott, a 1970 OU alumnus. “Saving my life took a total team effort, from my racquetball partner (Dave Meyers) who bolted to get help, to the students who instantly alerted the front desk, called 911 and summoned Terri Eudy. Eudy and Ross were instantly there to keep blood flowing to my brain and heart and to use the AED unit.

“You have seconds to react to a situation like this and can’t fumble around with it. Everyone did exactly the right thing. There were no weak links in that team.”

Eudy gave credit to her student staff in the Recreation Center for acting calmly and quickly.

“Our student staff took care of him until we arrived,” she said. “This is a student-run building, and the way the students who were on the scene reacted, it says a lot about their courage and integrity.”

The AED units, which had been installed in the Recreation Center just last February, played a major role in reviving Angott, said Eudy.

“So many people expressed their gratitude to OU for buying the AED units and providing the training to our staff,” she said. “We might not have been so lucky if we didn’t have the units.”

The following week, Angott elected to have triple bypass cardiac surgery performed at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak. The surgery was a success, and within three days he returned home. He expects to receive his doctor’s permission to resume his regular activities such as racquetball and tennis by August.

“I feel wonderful,” Angott said. “I can drive again, and in fact, I flew to a business meeting in Cleveland afterwards. Just last week, I went to a wedding reception and danced all night.”

The Southeastern Michigan Chapter of the American Red Cross recently honored Eudy, Ross and Thom for their lifesaving efforts.

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Voice your opinion about campus parking

The Oakland University Parking Committee asks that faculty, staff and students help them determine the future of parking on campus by completing an online survey.

“With enrollment increases each semester, the need for additional campus parking has become evident to the University,” says Greg Kampe, chair of the University Parking Committee. “As a result, the University has initiated a comprehensive study of future parking needs and solutions.”

In January, the Campus Master Planning Task Force formed an ad-hoc committee on parking to study the complex parking issues on campus and to make recommendations to the task force.

Based on the committee’s preliminary findings and recommendations, the University hired Walker Parking Consultants to assist in determining future parking space requirements, locations, operational models and financing.

The 17-member committee, which is comprised of faculty, staff and student representatives, also is conducting a parking survey and will report its findings and recommendations to the Campus Master Planning Task Force.

In addition to the survey, the parking committee is holding two open forums to answer any questions and to gather input from the campus community on parking.

The forums are set for November 1 from noon to 2 p.m. in the Oakland Center Oakland Room and on Nov. 2 from 4 to 6 p.m. in the Oakland Center Heritage Room. Free refreshments will be provided.

For more information or to voice your concerns on parking, contact Kampe at kampe@oakland.edu.

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New truck to help people with car trouble on campus

The OU Police Department (OUPD) recently acquired a 1999 GMC four-wheel-drive pickup truck to meet the need on campus for jump-starts, help changing flat tires and a little gas for empty tanks. Cadets drive the golden Grizzmobile, as it’s nicknamed, around campus to deter crime and to help students, faculty, staff and visitors.

“The EMVAT is part of our continuing effort to make the campus safe and provide more services to the OU community,” said OUPD director Dick Leonard. “The extra patrol vehicle reassures the OU community members so that they feel safer.”

Cadets patrolling in the truck are also available to escort students or staff to their cars in the evening. “We recommend that people on campus walk with somebody in the evening, but if nobody else is available, the cadets are glad to help,” said OUPD Lieutenant Mel Gilroy.

EMVAT service is for anyone on campus; users do not have to show campus identification.

The truck also saves steps for cadets and provides them practical experience as they pursue careers in law enforcement. About eight cadets work in paid positions for the OUPD each semester, acting as extra eyes and ears. Sergeant Allen Steele Jr. and Officer Early Alexander supervise the cadets.

For EMVAT help daily, noon-midnight, September through April, call 3331 or get the attention of the cadets on patrol.

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