Dubbed “Hawk Alert,” the system uses the Connect-ED service developed especially for schools, including colleges and universities. It allows delivery of a message to tens of thousands of cell phone numbers, home phone numbers, work phone numbers or e-mail accounts within seconds. The system is intended for emergency notification only, delivering messages about severe weather, violence, hazardous material incidents or other situations that pose a threat to students, faculty, and staff.
“In an emergency, it’s critical that we be able to reach all members of the University community in as short an amount of time as possible,” says Mark Katsouros, Director of TNS. “Hawk Alert will allow us to do that in a manner that’s much faster and more efficient than our current mass mail system.”
The first phase of Hawk Alert was implemented Sept. 1. A second phase, set to launch by Nov. 1, will add text messaging capabilities.
The University also has installed a series of notification towers equipped with sirens and voice systems, which also will help ensure that those on campus hear alerts and warnings.
University administrators are urging all students, staff, and faculty to add or update their cell and other phone numbers in the campus directory as soon as possible. To do that, log in to Employee Self Service and click “Name and Address Change” under the Name and Addresses tab. Input the information into the field marked “Alternate Phone” in the Residing Address tab.
Cell phone numbers populated in the “Alternate Phone” field are intended for emergency use only, and it is not the University’s intent that they will be listed in any public directories.