KU News Release

April 11, 2012
Contact: Mike Krings, KU News Service, 785-864-8860

Professor can speak about preparedness five years after Virginia Tech tragedy

David Guth

More Information

LAWRENCE — David Guth, associate professor of journalism, is available to speak with media about his research into universities and colleges’ emergency preparedness plans in the wake of the fifth anniversary of the Virginia Tech campus shooting.

Guth has authored a study in which he analyzed a sample of 162 college and university websites to determine whether they have emergency notifications, and if so, how prominently they are displayed, whether they use social media and a number of other factors. Among his findings, he learned that about 75 percent of the surveyed schools do have some sort of notification, but less than half of those display it prominently on the home page.

Guth can discuss different methods universities are using to notify their respective campus communities of emergencies, progress that has been made in campus emergency notifications since the Virginia Tech tragedy and several other topics. His research on the topic is ongoing.

On April 16, 2007, Virginia Tech student Seung-Hui Cho shot and killed 32 students and wounded 17 before taking his own life. The tragedy caused institutions across the country to review their security and emergency preparedness policies and, in many cases, take steps to improve communication with the campus community, including via internet and social media.

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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