Safety and Security
Faculty and staff at Lock Haven University have extensive experience in all aspects of operating international programs. In planning these programs, the concern for the safety of our students and faculty is always given careful attention. We know that there are risks involved in travel. It is therefore important to prepare for both known and unknown circumstances. The goal is to â€œmanage riskâ€ to the greatest extent possible and to communicate this to you in all materials.
It is important to have a comparative perspective of the United States and the world. The United States is known around the world as a comparatively dangerous country. No other country has as many guns or gun-related injuries and deaths. U.S. drug and alcohol abuse is among the highest in the world. Although international visitors come in great numbers to visit the United States, many arrive concerned about what they think they will find. The excitement of travel and the newness of the environment you are in make it easy to become careless or distracted. The following suggestions offer no guarantee of safety and are mostly common sense. The idea is to be aware of where you are and what is going on around you at all times.
The following tips are provided by the U.S. State Department especially for students going abroad.
- Learn about local laws, and the consequences for their violations. What appears to be a minor infraction in the U.S. can have major repercussions in your host country.
- Stay aware of your surroundings, no matter where you are.
- Learn how to summon help in any emergency, either for you or someone else. Know how to use a pay phone and have the correct change or token on hand.
- Inform yourself about the safety of areas that you will commonly frequent. Check country-specific conditions as well as travel warnings and alerts www.travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_1764.html
- Ask about, and learn, the emergency exit routes in your residence and school buildings.
- Have a safe place to store valuables at your residence.
- Carry only the cash or credit cards that you'll need. Use traveler checks in place of cash.
- When traveling, carry cash and credit cards in a money belt.
- Whenever possible, travel with another person or in groups.
- Keep your host program informed of your whereabouts. When traveling, let someone know with who you will be, along with the date/time of departure and return.
- Keep a low profile in demeanor and dress.
- Do not shout in public.
- Do not hitchhike, even though local citizens may.
- Exchange currency only at authorized agencies or reputable establishments.
- Know the location of, and register at, the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. https://step.state.gov/step/
- Keep up on current events, in the U.S., and, as they relate to U.S. citizens in your host country.
- Travel and Safety tips from the US Department of State http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/tips_1232.html
The US Department of State has developed a website specifically for students who travel or reside abroad: www.studentsabroad.state.gov