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WFU to test new emergency alert system March 4

February 27, 2008

Wake Forest University will test a new emergency alert system March 4 that will send a text or voice message to the mobile phones of students, staff and faculty.

The test message will be sent initially as a text message at 6 p.m. to Reynolda Campus undergraduate, graduate and professional school students.   People who do not have text messaging service or cannot respond to the text message will receive a voice message. 

The university required students with mobile phones to provide their numbers this academic year for the first time. 

In addition, the message will be sent simultaneously to staff and faculty who agreed to provide their mobile phone numbers.  Wake Forest has encouraged staff and faculty participation, but not required it.

The university acquired the new emergency alert system during the course of a comprehensive review of the university’s emergency preparedness measures, including the university’s methods for communicating with students, staff and faculty in the event of an emergency.   Such messages will be distributed on campus by University Police.

On March 4, when the emergency notification system sends a text message to mobile phones announcing the test, recipients will be asked to respond.

The response is requested to assist in the testing process.  In an actual emergency, a response will not be requested.

"We encourage everyone who receives the message to respond,” Kenneth A. Zick, vice president for student life, said.  “It’s critical to determining the effectiveness of the new system.”

Details on how to respond will be provided March 3 in an e-mail distributed to students, staff and faculty.

Recipients of the call will see the phone number 336-758-8911 appear on their telephone. The university is asking students, staff and faculty to include that number in their list of contacts recorded in their mobile phone so that they may better recognize the number in the future.  The university suggests that the number be identified as “WFU Emergency Alert.”

Press Contacts:

Kevin Cox
(336) 758-5237

Cheryl Walker
(336) 758-5237

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