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Furman U Chooses ADT's Select Link Emergency Notification System

Furman University in Greenville, SC has gone public with its installation of ADT Security Services' Select Link, an emergency communications system that can simultaneously send text or voice messages to cell phones, desktop and laptop computers, PDAs, and digital pagers.

Furman is using the service, which it calls the Immediate Response Information System or IRIS, to notify students, faculty, and staff of emergency situations such as dangerous conditions on campus, severe weather, and school and road closings, according to Robert Miller, director of the university's department of public safety. "ADT Select Link has all the features I was looking for--short activation time, easy operation, maintenance and management, and the capability of using cell phones, emails, pagers and text messaging to notify students and staff," he said.

The system accepts message input through a Web site or telephone. A designated staff member types or records a voice message into the system and determines which recipients need to receive the information. Should a computer not be available during an emergency situation, the staff member can call a toll-free number 24 hours a day to reach an ADT Select Link representative, who will then compose and send the message.

The receipt of every message is automatically verified and recorded. Busy signals or no-answers result in repeated calls until the message is received. The same information reaches every recipient, delivering voice and text in a choice of 10 languages, encompassing English, Spanish, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, and Vietnamese.

Miller said 98 percent of students at the 2,600-student school have registered for the notification service.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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