Care of Valuables and Personal Safety

  • Do not carry large amounts of money. Use either personal checks or traveler’s checks.
  • Do not send paper money or coins by mail (it is illegal). Use checks or money orders.
  • Do not leave valuables, especially money, in your car or classroom.
  • Always lock your car when it is parked. Lock your bicycle or moped to an immovable object with a good bike lock.
  • Lock your room or apartment when you leave, even if you are only going to be away for a few minutes.
  • Take your valuables with you or leave them with a trusted friend if you leave Lawrence for a school vacation. KU vacations are high crime periods in Lawrence.
  • Do not go out alone at night.
  • If you are on campus and need emergency help, you can contact the KU Police Department by using one of the emergency phones indicated by a blue light pole located at various points around campus. Simply pick up the telephone receiver and a police car will automatically be sent to your location. There are also yellow call boxes located in campus buildings. To operate a call box push the button, wait for an answer and talk to the person. The boxes are usually located by elevators.

What Every Person Should Know

You can read more about safety at KU (including the KU Crime Report) on the KU Public Safety website at

Here is some information from the Douglas County Rape Victim Support Project. Rape and sexual assault are serious, violent, and frightening crimes against women, men and children. A rape is reported in the U.S. every 12 seconds and rape is one of the fastest growing crimes committed in this society. Criminologists estimate that four to ten times as many rapes are committed as are reported. Rapes occur at any hour of any day of any season. The victims are young and old, of all races, sexually experienced and inexperienced. Victims find the experience painful, humiliating, and emotionally disturbing. Important things to remember are that the rapist is looking for the easiest victim and that the rapist may well be someone known by the victim. Regardless of who you are, you too may become a victim of rape or sexual assault.

Here are some suggestions to prevent rape and sexual assault.

In general:

  • Be aware of possible rape situations
  • Be alert when you are alone
  • Be discrete about your personal plans
  • Consider what you would do if attacked

At home:

  • Lock doors and windows
  • Never open your door to a stranger
  • Ask repairmen for identification
  • List initials (not first name) and last name on mailbox and in the phone directory

In your car:

  • Check the back seat of car before entering
  • Lock doors when driving or parked
  • If you are followed, do not go home; drive to a busy area or to the police station

On the street:

  • Walk purposefully; even when you are lost, appear alert and confident
  • Avoid walking alone
  • Head for the nearest lights or people if someone is following you
  • Stay close to the curb and away from alleys, bushes and doorways
  • Support for victims of rape and sexual assault is available by calling 841-2345. For more information, request a booklet from the AEC cross-cultural advisors.


In American culture, it is very common for male and female students to spend time together. Spending time together does not necessarily mean that two people of the opposite sex have a romantic relationship. It is normal and acceptable to be ‘just friends’ with someone of the opposite sex. Male and female friends can talk, spend time together, eat meals together, or do activities they both enjoy together without becoming romantic or sexually involved.     

Before two people begin a romantic or sexual relationship, it is very important that they communicate clearly with each other. Both people must want to become “more than friends” before they start a romantic or physical relationship. In addition, it is very important that both people are comfortable and happy to be in any romantic relationship that they are in. Either person can choose to end the romantic or sexual relationship at any time that they choose by telling their partner that they want it to end. It is NEVER okay for someone to pressure, intimidate, or threaten another person to become romantically or sexually active if he or she does not want to.

Dating and romantic relationships can often include verbal and nonverbal language and behaviors that might be confusing because of cultural differences. If you have any questions or concerns about what is appropriate behavior for dating in the U.S., please make an appointment to talk to a cross-cultural advisor.     

Sexual Harassment

KU takes sexual harassment very seriously, and it is important for every student to understand what it means. What is sexual harassment?

Sexual harassment can mean:

  • Trying to develop a romantic or sexual relationship with someone who does not want it;
  • Making comments about another person’s body or sexual activities;
  • Threatening to perform a sexual act with someone who does not want to;
  • Continuing to pay a lot of attention to someone who wants it to stop;
  • Sending inappropriate photos, texts, or messages to someone who does not want them, or posting any inappropriate photos or messages about someone on social media;  
  • Touching or getting close to someone in a way that makes the person uncomfortable;
  • Making jokes or teasing someone about sex or about their gender or sexual orientation;
  • Speaking or acting aggressively to someone, or intimidating someone about anything related to sex, gender or sexual orientation.

Students who are found responsible for committing sexual harassment will be disciplined by the university and may also face criminal charges.

If you have any questions about other behaviors that might be sexual harassment, or if you are in a situation that feels like sexual harassment, it is very important to ask for help. The University has many ways to support and protect victims of sexual harassment. 

If you have concerns or questions about sexual harassment, please make an appointment to see a cross-cultural advisor.  You can also look at KU’s website about sexual harassment at

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