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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Faculty Senate discusses campus safety, social media misinformation

Lights+illuminate+the+UAC+Arch%2C+Monday%2C+March+29%2C+2021%2C+at+Texas+State.

Lights illuminate the UAC Arch, Monday, March 29, 2021, at Texas State.

Texas State’s Faculty Senate reviewed improvements on campus safety and discussed the effects of social media misinformation at its Nov. 10 meeting.
Vice President for Finance and Support Services Eric Algoe opened the meeting with a presentation on the various ways Texas State has created a safer campus for students and faculty over the past couple of years. He discussed improvements in campus facilities, emergency management, technology and services, emergency communications, the student behavior assessment team and the University Police Department. He also mentioned there have been two finalists selected for chief of police.
Sen. Jennifer Jensen later suggested that this information could be shared more openly with staff and students to create a better sense of security for those on campus.
“How do I as a normal faculty member not know 80% of that … communicate that information not just to students but to faculty and staff as well, please,” Jensen said. “I mean, I just learned a whole bunch. And I actually feel safer knowing. So, it would go a long way just to transparently communicate that.”
The Senate also readdressed the cyber-harassment policy approval from the Nov. 3 meeting and reapproved the decision to make it a stand-alone policy.
Lastly, the Faculty Senate brought up communication issues that have presented themselves on social media. Sen. Ben Martin mentioned expired information surfacing online along with the recent campus-wide alert involving an “ongoing student disciplinary situation.” While the university said there was no active threat that day, misinformation spread online as some students tweeted there was a shooter on campus. Texas State responded to the allegations stating notifications would be sent out via text and email if there were an active threat.
Several senators agreed that misinformation on campus is a current issue but did not issue solutions on how to prevent it. President Denise Trauth and Algoe discussed that the search for verified information is more important than speed when it comes to sharing information with the university.

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