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Case Study: Kent State University

Kent State University Ensures Safety, Preparedness With Emergency Notification System


Ever since the deadly and tragic Virginia Tech shootings in April of 2007, the Geauga campus of Kent State University has been looking for a fast and reliable means to communicate with students, faculty, and administrators during an emergency.

Although the main KSU campus has an emergency text messaging system, it is not sufficient for the Geauga campus, located among the fertile farmlands of Mennonite country near Burton, Ohio. During an emergency communications test in the fall of 2007, a mock emergency text message sent at 9 a.m. on a Saturday did not reach many Geauga campus students until 1 p.m. that day.

“That’s an unacceptable delay,” says John Granny, the campus’s business services administrator. “Our goal is to get the word out in case of a campus emergency in no more than 15 minutes.”

In addition, during his research into the campus’s emergency communications program, Granny learned that a significant portion of KSU-Geauga students do not have text messaging capabilities with their cell phones. There had to be a better way.


RedPhone from BellTower Technologies LLC. This emergency notification service has given Kent State University-Geauga the ability to:

  • Make hundreds of phone calls in seconds;
  • Send out a consistent message with each emergency call;
  • Confirm that everyone on the notification list received and acknowledged the emergency voice phone message; and,
  • Offer students a flexible and convenient way to sign up for the emergency notification service, via a brief phone call that automatically registers the calling phone number.

A recent RedPhone system test sent a mock emergency voice message to all the faculty and staff members in just three minutes, noted Granny. “It just blew through that list. BellTower showed me how to follow its progress on the Web and run off reports of calls and messages received. It was most impressive.”

According to Granny, “The BellTower folks found ways to make our RedPhone system even better that I ever would have thought about. They have helped me wrestle this entire project into a manageable process. They’ve been great to work with.”

Granny says the voluntary emergency notification system will be ready to promote to students by the April 2008 recruiting season launch, and information about joining the notification list will be part of student orientation in the summer and fall.

Granny concludes, “When parents hear about our emergency preparedness system, it will help with recruiting. [Our use of RedPhone] shows that we care about student safety and are on top of things.”

About BellTower Technologies

BellTower Technologies LLC provides emergency notification services under the Instant Recall brand (for food and product recalls) and the RedPhone brand (for government and university crisis management and business continuity and disaster recovery). Developed over a five-year period, the company’s breakthrough technology gives client organizations a centralized command-and-control communications platform that enables, standardizes and simplifies best of breed emergency communications across applications and organizational boundaries. BellTower Technologies is based in Dallas, Texas and can be reached at 888-400-4786 or online at www.instantrecall.com or www.belltowertech.com.

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BellTower Technologies
2089 N Collins Blvd Suite 200
Richardson, TX 75080

(888) 400-4786 Main