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MU partners with National Guard to voice safety concerns

Francis Quadrangle on the MU campus
Francis Quadrangle on the MU campus

MU Off-Campus Student services partnered with the Missouri National Guard Tuesday afternoon to talk to students about enhancing safety. The monthly event series is called Mizzou Aware and is put on by the Wellness Center in hopes of promoting student, faculty and staff awareness and to encourage better knowledge of one's surroundings and environment.

Participants in the discussion added that off-campus violence has increased with the multiple shootings that occurred at two housing complexes, Aspen Heights and the Cottages. A National Guard member, who led the discussion, says events like Mizzou Aware are vital for students and campuses.

"I think one of the main reasons it's (event) relevant is the fact that most students that go here are not from Columbia and a lot of them aren’t even from Missouri," said Sergeant Sherman Vladeff.  "It just adds a level of danger that wouldn’t necessarily be if you were at home."

But despite the recent off-campus violence, Off-Campus Student Services Coordinator Dionne George said safety is a topic that should be covered regardless of how safe or unsafe the environment or campus is.

"In light of everything that is going on, I think it won't hurt for students to be reminded of general safety tips and things they can do to increase their safety," said George. "The one thing we just want is added exposure for this session."

The event also highlighted the importance of situational and environment awareness, emphasizing certain topics such as dating, burglaries and evasive techniques. Although this was the last Mizzou Aware event of the semester, Off-Campus Student Services has three events left for the month of November.