By Dylan Morris; The Whetstone
In a two-week period, Dover Police reported nearly 20 incidents of tires slashed in commercial parking lots along the Route 13/113 area.
Wesley College sent text and email alerts to students, faculty and staff informing them of the incident and to report any suspicious activity to the police.
There was one problem, though. Not everyone was receiving those alerts.
“I got the text and email about the class cancellation on the first day of the semester,” junior Allison Mills said. “But recently I have not received any texts alerting me about anything else happening on campus, such as the slashing of tires near campus or the reports of people’s cars being broken into.”
The Wesley text and email alert system was created in response to the Virginia Tech shooting of April 16, 2007, which killed 39 students and injured 17.
The college created a system where students can easily be notified of any emergency in and around the Wesley campus.
“We will also use the alert system to notify the college community of inclement weather that could impact the campus,” Supervisor Constable Erik Sasse said.
The alerts are sent via text and through the student’s email. However, many in the Wesley community received neither during the first-day-of-school cancellation nor the tire slashing incidents.
Senior Megan DiRubbio did not receive the alert that the first day of classes was canceled due to bad weather.
“I’m signed up for the alerts, usually through email, but I did not receive the alerts about the first day of class being canceled,” she said. “I didn’t find out about it until one of my teammates told me.”
DuRubbio said she wants to be notified for practical reasons.
“I am on campus late during the weekdays,” she said. “I also live off campus so I feel it is an important and easy way to send out notifications.”
Senior Ashley Royer said she did not receive many of the text alerts, but got some of the email ones.
“The last text alert I received was on Jan. 13 about the winter storm and check-in being moved to the next day,” Royer said. “I also receive emails typically from Walt Beaupre about any security issues on and off campus, the last one being about tires being slashed off campus and Dover PD arrested the suspect.”
Wesley alerts have also been inconsistent with many of the faculty and staff on campus.
“I get the alerts some time, but not as often as others,” Registrar Assistant Ami Leaming said.
“I know a lot of people were complaining around winter break that they weren’t getting the alerts,” Associate Registrar Erin Collier said. “I signed up for them, but haven’t received an alert in a while.”
“I seem to get the alerts all the time these day,” said Customer Service Assistant Shelby Everline said. “Sometimes at 2 in the morning my phone will just start going off with them.”
The Information Technology (IT) and Security Office said there are several reasons why people are not getting the alerts.
“Those new to the system either have not signed up, or did not sign up correctly,” Chief Information Officer Paul Copeland said. “For those continuing the service, they have not gone in and updated their information.”
Additionally, student’s enrollment in the alert system expires every six months and needs to be renewed.
“I received a text at the end of June from the alert system letting me know that my ability to receive the alerts was about to expire,” Director of Public Safety Walt Beaupre said. “It is possible people didn’t renew their enrollment have stopped receiving the alerts.”
To sign up for the alerts, go onto My.Wesley.edu and click the Wesley College Alert System tab on the left side of the page and follow the directions.
You can also sign up using the link https://wesley.omnilert.net/subscriber.php?command=show_signup. The IT department sent out an email to all students on Jan. 22 telling people how to sign up for the alerts. This email and others like it may have been sent to the student’s clutter folder instead of the inbox.