The new phone application called Cowboy Guardian will be available to OSU Institute of Technology students and employees this month, making it easier to alert and report to law enforcement.
The app is available through Rave Mobile Safety, a recognized safety software provider that the OSU system uses for its emergency notifications known as Cowboy Alerts.
“When it comes to campus safety, we don’t want to put all of our eggs into one basket, like only sending notifications out via text. We want to do more,” said Dean of Students Devin DeBock. “Cowboy Guardian app is another level we’re adding to our campus safety system.”
DeBock said OSUIT has never had the traditional blue emergency phones spread throughout campus like those found on the OSU Stillwater campus.
“When we were looking at how to add that service for our students, we found it just wasn’t the right fit for us,” he said. “In this mobile, digital age, making the blue phones an app made more sense.”
The Rave Cowboy Guardian app for the OSUIT campus is now available to download in the Apple or Google Play stores and is open to all students whether they live on and off campus. Users can alert the OSUIT Police Department or the nearest 911 dispatch, and text law enforcement anonymously with crime reporting tips.
Having an avenue for the campus community to communicate with law enforcement is “absolutely critical” DeBock said.
“Community policing, it requires the citizens of a community to actively report and be a part of the solution. We have a little under 3,000 students, but our police force can’t be everywhere and see everything,” he said. “The digital age and mobile devices means people don’t just have to report what they saw; they can record it. It doesn’t require the reporter to be in the middle of the incident.”
In the event of a critical incident, the app also allows law enforcement to locate the phone through GPS.
With Guardian, users can create a profile of information about themselves, and invite family and friends to their safety network. When needed, the user can request one or more of their Guardians to virtually walk with them on or off campus. It’s like having an emergency blue light system and a trusted friend with you at all times.
OSUIT President Bill R. Path said Cowboy Guardian is a new enhanced level of safety whether a student is living on campus or in a privately-owned home or apartment building.
“I remember a time before 911. If something happened, you had to track down a pay phone and look up police department phone numbers. What an advancement it was to have 911,” said Path. “Cowboy Guardian is the next generation of reporting. Eventually we’re going to see programs like this across cities and across the country.”
- Download Rave Guardian from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store
- Register with your okstate.edu email account
- Select OSUIT in Okmulgee from the OSU campus list
Now the blue Rave Guardian bar across the top of the app should turn orange and say Cowboy Guardian
- To complete your Cowboy Guardian activation, be sure to confirm your email address. Check your spam/junk folder if you didn’t receive a confirmation message