Protecting yourself and your valuables

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The world can be a dangerous place. It is important to know how to protect yourself and your vehicle from harm.

This is the main message campus administrators are trying to get students to understand. Safety is a priority. Students need to know that just because this is a small university, they are not necessarily immune to crime. Washburn Police offer many educational programs each month, ranging from sexual assault, the dangers of drug usage, to how to protect oneself against identity theft said Sheri Jackson, Washburn University Police Department officer. 

Another big focus of campus safety is vehicle safety. The officers of the Washburn Police department have many helpful tips on how to limit the opportunities for thieves to steal items from your vehicle. These tips include locking the vehicle when not inside, rolling up the windows upon exiting the car, parking in well-lit areas and removing valuables. WUPD also suggests not leaving a car unattended with the engine running, not placing hidden keys in or on the vehicle and installing locking lug nuts to prevent custom wheels from being stolen. These tips were found on WUPD’s Web site, however it is currently under construction so finding them may be tricky for a while.

“Just take valuable things like CDs and billfolds out of your car. That would be a big help,” said Dean Forester, chief of police.

Students may also register their vehicle with the Washburn Police Department, which helps the officers if something happens. Registration forms are available at the department office, in Morgan Hall, room 156.

Another good resource with tips about protecting vehicles is the Safe Streets Coalition which was founded in 1995 to help make Topeka a safer city to live in. Safe Streets has a program called “Lock it of Lose it” that is designed to help people remember to remove valuables from their vehicles. It also offers a list of auto safety tips that can be found at

Washburn is working  on a program called Campus Watch that focuses on all aspects of keeping students safe. Garrett Love, WSGA president said that they are working with many agencies, including Safe Streets, to promote campus safety.

“Campus watch is a collaborative effort between WSGA, Washburn students and faculty, Washburn Police to enrich the well-being and safety of the students,” said Dlany Conny, WSGA public relations director.

These prevention techniques can save a major headache down the road. Remember, “Lock it or Lose it!”