Emergency Notifications & Timely Warnings
The Department of Public Safety - Campus Police, in conjunction with the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts administration, makes every effort to ensure emergency notifications or timely warnings regarding any extraordinary event(s) that may pose a potential, ongoing or continuing threat to campus community members or its property, are distributed to the same when deemed appropriate and necessary. The purpose of such notification is to ensure the highest regard for health, safety and the protection of life and property is maintained within the campus community.
In the case of an emergency or other urgent event, students, faculty, and staff will be contacted through a variety of different methods. These may include telephone and cell phone voice calls, cell phone text messages, voice-mail messages, telephone intercom paging, e-mail announcements, campus websites, community postings, local media sources, and direct notification through staff. In addition, MCLA has bolstered its internal and external emergency communication capabilities with the recent acquisition of Communicator NXT - emergency notification technology that enables the rapid and seamless distribution of information using all of the communication methods noted above. While the system is implemented and being readied for use, it is only as good as the information it contains. This is where we need your help and cooperation!
In order to send you emergency voice and text messages via your cell phone, you must provide MCLA with your mobile phone information. Sign Up Now and follow the directions provided. The information you supply is confidential, will not be shared, and will only be used to contact you through the system in the event of an emergency.
Before I Go To Login... I Have Questions
- What is the MCLA Emergency Notification System?
- What exactly is Communicator NXT and how does it work?
- What kind of emergency notifications and timely warnings will be sent?
- Who will get notified with the emergency notification system?
- Who is authorized to send messages out using the emergency notification system?
- Will I receive information other than emergency notifications and timely warnings through the system?
- What information do you need from me to become enrolled in the system?
- Why do you need my cell phone number and service provider?
- What if I don't own a cell phone?
- What if I don't want to receive voice or text related cell phone messages?
- How do I submit my mobile phone information into the system?
- What if I don't have or know my Banner Self Service username and password?
- How do I change my contact information after I initially provide it?
- What steps are taken to ensure the information I submit is secure?
- Will my contact information be shared?
- What number will be reflected on my caller ID when a message is sent to me?
- What should I do if I receive an emergency notification or timely warning from the MCLA emergency notification system?
- What other emergency notification systems are used at MCLA?
- Where can I find more information about emergency preparedness at MCLA?
What is the MCLA Emergency Notification System?
MCLA has implemented an Emergency Notification System composed of several methods of communication used to inform the Campus in the event of an emergency or urgent situation. With little or no notice, MCLA can activate the Communicator NXT emergency notification system and distribute information with heightened accuracy and speed via telephone and cell phone voice calls, cell phone text messages, voice-mail messages, and e-mail announcements. MCLA also has additional internal methods of notification to include campus websites, telephone intercom paging, community postings, use of the local media resources, and direct notification through staff. Recognizing complete notification of 100% of the campus population is not possible, MCLA will use as many communication methods as possible in an attempt to notify the largest percentage feasible of the impacted population, given the incident/event specifics.
What exactly is Communicator NXT and how does it work?
Communicator NXT was developed by the Dialogic Communications Corporation located in Franklin, Tennessee. It is an emergency notification system that uses communications technology which allows emergency response personnel to efficiently and effectively deliver critical, event-specific messages, including time-sensitive information and instructions, to community members experiencing an emergency. The Communicator NXT will be used to send out numerous emergency notification messages and warnings to ensure the highest regard for health, safety and the protection of life and property is maintained within the campus community.
What kind of emergency notifications and timely warnings will be sent?
The MCLA Emergency Notification System will only be used to distribute information to community members during an emergency or urgent/time sensitive event that may pose a potential, ongoing or continuing threat to the campus community or its property. An emergency is defined as a situation that poses an immediate and significant danger to community members or property. (Example: fire, hazardous materials release, violent or criminal acts) An urgent or time sensitive event is a situation that significantly disrupts the programs and activities of MCLA. (Example: utility interruptions, weather cancellations, emergency call-back of staff)
Who will get notified with the emergency notification system?
MCLA faculty, staff, and students who are current community members will receive notification via campus telephone voice calls, campus voicemails, First Class emails and other internal communications sources provided they have activated such devices and accounts. ONLY THOSE COMMUNITY MEMBERS WITH UPDATED CELL PHONE AND CARRIER INFORMATION ENTERED INTO THE MCLA BANNER SELF SERVICE WEBSITE CAN BE CONTACTED VIA CELL PHONE VOICE OR CELL PHONE TEXT MESSAGES!
Who is authorized to send messages out using the emergency notification system?
Authorization to send messages out using the emergency notification system may come from the College President, Senior Vice President or designee, Senior Cabinet Members, the Director of Public Safety, an Incident Commander or designee, Emergency Response Team A Members, or the On-Duty Campus Police Supervisor. Messages will only be sent out by trained College staff typically designated to manage campus emergencies.
MCLA currently uses the Communicator NXT emergency notification system to provide information and instructions to College community members in the event of an emergency or urgent situation requiring timely notification. The College is exploring and evaluating new uses of similar notification systems for future communication needs.
The only information you are being asked to provide is your cellular phone number and mobile carrier. There may be future requests for other information as we upgrade the system.
MCLA recognizes that cell phones are used as a primary method of communication for faculty, staff, and students constantly on the move. As mentioned before, cell phones are just one of the many different ways Communicator NXT allows you to receive emergency messages. Because MCLA does not routinely collect and manage your cell phone number and carrier as a part of faculty, staff, and student information, we are relying on you to provide this information to us.
If you don't own a cell phone, you will still be able to receive emergency messages. Just log into the system and click on the "Update Emergency Contacts and Cell Phone" information link. Instead of entering a cell phone number in the designated area, enter the ten digit telephone number you wish to be contacted at during an emergency. Once you have entered the number, click submit and make sure you see the screen indicating the telephone number has been added. That's it! Also, you should know email, voicemail, and the College's website are all other ways we will use to contact you in an emergency.
The choice to receive voice and/or text messages via your cell phone is yours; however, MCLA strongly encourages all community members to participate in the emergency notification system by providing us with their cell phone information. Providing this necessary information will help ensure we are able to communicate with you using as many devices Communicator NXT has to offer.
To submit your mobile phone information into the system, follow these simple steps:
- Go to the secure site
- Login to the system using your Banner Self Service username and password.
- Read and follow the directions provided on the page. That's it!
If you don't have or know your Banner Self Service username or password, contact the MCLA Computer Help Desk or call (413) 662-5276 for assistance.
To change your information after you initially provide it simply return to the site and follow the instructions for editing your information.
The contact information submitted for use with the emergency notification system is stored in the Banner information system within MCLA's computer network on campus. The network is protected by multiple layers of physical and technological security. Access is strictly controlled and limited to authorized staff only. Your information is then transmitted via secure technology to the vendor where it is stored within their system also protected by multiple layers of security.
NO! MCLA (nor its affiliates) will not share or use the cell phone information you provide to us. The information you supply is confidential.
When MCLA activates the Emergency Notification System via Communicator NXT, it is accessing a system comprised of approximately 192 telephone lines (numbers) which can be used to contact you during the emergency. Although the seven digit portion of the numbers may vary, they all share a (615) area code which will appear on your caller ID.
If you receive an emergency message or timely notification through ANY of the methods MCLA uses to communicate with, you should:
- Listen to or read the ENTIRE message and make sure you understand what is being communicated.
- Do not ignore the message! Take all messages seriously!
- Follow the instructions provided immediately!
In the case of an emergency or other urgent event, students, faculty, and staff will be contacted through a variety of different methods. These may include:
- telephone calls
- voice-mail messages
- telephone intercom paging
- e-mail announcements
- campus websites
- community postings
- local media sources
- direct notification through staff.
For more information about emergency procedures at MCLA, contact us by phone at (413) 662-5284, anytime.