In addition to figuring out roommates for next year, if and where one will live off campus, rent, food and all the other responsibilities of next year’s housing, prioritizing safety should be included when planning for next year.

“When we picked The Avenue, we looked at the location,” Elizabeth Buell, a sophomore biology major from New Braunfels, said. “We looked at the distance from campus, and the distance from other things like the Wal-Mart. And we made sure it wasn’t in a sort of sketchy area.”

Checking crime in the area is an important part in apartment security, Gloria Quinton, marketing and sales representative for Firetrol Protection Systems, said.

When looking for an apartment, she said to make sure to look for a good security system to protect access inside the complex like fingerprint activated entrances or card access.

“Make sure there is access control to get in and if there are any workout areas or public study areas where you may be at night,” Quinton said. “It ensures whoever gets in or out has clearance and are on paper. You have to have a lease to be in the system. If not, then perfect strangers and potentially harmful people can get in.”

Paying attention to one’s surroundings is important in both personal and apartment safety, she said.

“Always be aware of lighting and cameras around the complex,” Quinton said. “Be sure to park by cameras and in well-lit areas. Be sure that where you live has access control and security.”

Buell and her roommate always make sure to have their doors locked, she said.

“We also always lock the doors. Even if we’re in the room, we always make sure to lock the doors,” she said. “The Avenue is good about keeping the lights on all the time. They also apparently have security officers roaming around, too.”

Like the security officers at various complexes, Lt. Amy Ivey and officers at the Texas Tech Police Department work to keep students safe on campus, she said.

“Our officers patrol campus 24/7,” Ivey said. “We also patrol the dorms and make sure students are safe. We work hand-in-hand with the (Community Advisers) and (Resident Advisers). We also give talks about alcohol and drug safety, dorm safety and active shooter safety to students.”

Being aware of one’s surroundings is important, she said.

“Be sure to shut and lock the door whenever you leave the room,” Ivey said. “Don’t prop the door open even if you’re going to get a package downstairs. If there is a knock on the door, look through the peephole to make sure you know who it is. If you don’t feel safe (and you’re on campus) call us so we can come and check things out.”

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