NYU includes a complex network of global communities in which social and physical factors combine to influence health. Many health issues – such as violence and unintentional injury, transportation safety, and the risk of communicable disease – affect not only an individual but also the population at large. With its growing position as a global university, it is critical for NYU to focus on risk reduction strategies and proactive approaches for health and safety issues common to all students and staff studying and working at sites throughout the world.
This page is intended to be a resource containing suggestions for what you can do to increase NYU students’ personal responsibility for actions that contribute to a safe and healthy campus community.
• Get a flu vaccine. Influenza is highly contagious. Receiving a yearly influenza vaccination is the most effective way to reduce your risk and your students’ risk of catching the flu.13 Flu vaccines are important and available to students at the Student Health Center, and to faculty and staff through NYU Human Resource’s Live Smart program.
• Display Student Health Center posters and fact sheets about cold and flu prevention measures. Staff, faculty, and students are encouraged to download prevention materials for display in work and living spaces such as lounges, restrooms, computer labs, gyms, cafeterias, kitchens, and break areas, etc. Placing wellness prompts in high traffic areas can be a highly effective method for reinforcing prevention measures such as proper covering your cough techniques and hand washing.
• Promote the “flu buddy” program to students. To help prevent the transmission of influenza or other contagious illnesses, flu buddies check in and support one another when they are sick.
• Encourage students to stay home when they are sick. This will help prevent the spread of infectious illnesses among you and your class. Include your absences and makeup policies in your syllabi so students have a clear understanding of your procedures and expectations.
• Promote frequent hand washing. Thorough hand-washing and maintaining good hygiene can prevent the spread of viruses within the university community.14 If soap and water is not readily available, know where hand sanitizer dispensers are in academic buildings and consider putting a bottle of an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol in your classroom or lab.
• Avoid requesting an “excuse note” from students who miss class due to illness. The NYU Student Health Center does NOT issue “excuse notes” to students no matter how ill the student may be. Additionally, unnecessary visits to the Student Health Center can increase the spread of communicable illnesses and impair a student’s capacity to rest and get well at home.
• Encourage students to study in groups for midterms and finals to prevent late nights alone in public locations. Remind students to call Safe Ride if they do not feel safe going home after the study session ends.
• Know resources that are available to you assist a student who may be a victim of violence
• For faculty involved with students travelling/studying abroad familiarize, register yourself and encourage your students to register with NYU Traveler. The NYU Traveler is a tool to enhance the safety of students, faculty, administrators, and staff traveling on University-related business. When you book or register through NYU Traveler, your travel plans are routed through Worldcue, a traveler safety service with which NYU has contracted. Worldcue will automatically alert the individual traveler to dangerous conditions that may have emerged where he or she will be traveling, and will automatically alert the University to emergencies, allowing it to move more rapidly to assist members of the NYU community.
• Attend a workshop or class about preventing harassment and violence on-campus: The Office of Equal Opportunity offers education and awareness workshops for the University community, including faculty and staff, on a variety of topics such as Preventing Harassment on Campus and training on Title IX - Responding to Sexual Assault, Harassment, and Violence on Campus. Visit the NYU Policies and Guidelines page for a listing of classes and information about how to register.
• Familiarize yourself with NYU’s Policy on Sexual Assault, Harassment and Other forms of Sexual Misconduct
• Should your curriculum recommend or require the use of social media, remind students about cyberbullying, online stalking, and how to stay safe online. With the explosion of social media, faculty can be part of a larger conversation with students about digital citizenship and online behavior. You can instruct them in safe, ethical, and responsible Internet use. Consider establishing “rules” for social media projects which will help students stay safer online. Basic tips include: know if your Department has a policy on using social media in the classroom, and comply; use public pages for your classes to post homework assignments and other updates; use groups to control membership and facilitate discussion; and address inappropriate content, and if necessary, report any threatening behavior to the Office of Community Standards and Compliance, Public Safety, or the Wellness Exchange. For more about teaching in a digital age, download the Facebook for Educators Guide and be familiar with personal internet safety precautions.
• Encourage participation in and provide information about the NYU Bike Share program. NYU Bike Share requires all participants to attend a safety training workshop in order to ensure that students are able to traverse the city safely. After attending the workshop, students are eligible to rent bikes, with a helmet and safety-lock, for free from locations throughout campus. Request a workshop today!