Investment in Safety and Student Support
UK's recently completed three-year, $4.8 million project, spearheaded by the UK Police Department, provides UK with a centralized safety response system. It includes:
- Video management system (VMS) to monitor areas of campus: A geo-diverse VMS allows real-time monitoring through internet connected cameras. The VMS uses analytics for identifying situations on campus and reviewing evidence. The system also allows secure monitoring remotely through mobile devices or off-campus locations.
- Centralized access control system to secure facilities remotely: The new system will allow UK Police to lock individual or all buildings from a remote, central location in the event of a threat on campus. Existing buildings will be modified to work with the system, and construction of new buildings will automatically incorporate the security system.
- Identification badge operations on campus: The UK Police Department has standardized campus ID badge operations, creating a single ID for students, faculty and staff that will better control building access.
- Early warning speakers and internal overhead notifications to broadcast threats to campus safety: In response to a crisis, the police department is able to provide immediate notifications to alert all persons on campus through a combination of warning speakers, overhead paging, voice calls, emails and text messages.
The UK Community of Concern team seeks to proactively enhance the well-being and safety of the University's students and employees. This effort currently takes several forms, including the following:
- Increased integration between teams charged with reviewing cases involving students and/or employees of concern.
- Greater integration of the University community with efforts to report and address issues of concern.
- Introduction of a new online reporting system to help analyze, anticipate and address situations of concern.
- Enhanced efforts to connect students, faculty and staff with counseling and support resources when needed.
The University of Kentucky Counseling Center, part of the UK Division of Student and Academic Life, provides confidential psychological counseling to currently enrolled UK students and consultation services to currently enrolled UK students, UK faculty and staff and caregivers. The Counseling Center seeks to provide a space for students to explore freely any personal problems or concerns they may not wish to share with family or friends. The Counseling Center offers short term counseling and therapy to support students' growth and assist students with mental health, academic and/or other personal concerns that might interfere with academic performance or a sense of personal well-being while at UK. Services include individual, couple and group counseling; major and career counseling; and outreach programming.
In 2013, UK was awarded the JedCampus Seal from the The Jed Foundation, a leading organization working to promote educational health and prevent suicide among college and university students. The seal recognizes schools that exhibit comprehensive menthal health promotion and suicide prevention programming on campus. It is part of the foundation's JedCampus program, the first nationwide program to facilitate a school's ability to assess and enhance their mential health support system from a campus-wide perspective.
With the award of the JedCampus Seal, UK is among the first colleges and universities in the nation to be recognized for comprehensive mental health programming on campus.