Communication in the event of a crisis

EMU’s Crisis Management Preparedness Team continually assesses best practices for crisis communication protocol.

EMU is a relatively small campus. This has informed our choices and decision-making process.

Communication Plan

Depending on the nature of the crisis, various communications scenarios will unfold.

In a fast-unfolding situation, the EMU Alerts system will be used immediately to get key messages out to students, faculty, staff immediately. The same message will be sent via text (unless an individual has opted out), email and posted as a clear alert on the EMU website. Depending on the situation, social media will be employed as well.

As crisis management leaders are alerted to an unfolding situation, the Emergency Management Team will convene for ongoing assessment and messaging to all stakeholders. The Emergency Management Team will collaborate closely with Harrisonburg Police Department and local fire and rescue personnel depending on the gravity of the situation.

Our goal is to keep campus community members, parents, loved ones informed with facts, recognizing the speed with which information — and misinformation — can travel via social media and text.

Building Access and Evacuation Plans

EMU building “wardens” are trained to institute prescribed and rehearsed evacuation plans. If a building lock-down is necessary, these same wardens will institute their agreed-upon plan for implementing a building-specific lock-down of their building.

EMU limits access to classroom buildings outside normal class times, and all residence halls are accessible only through an ID-card access system.