There’s an app for that

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Jaclyn Moses

Apps that can maintain students’ safety on the weekends

Graphic by Aaron Levenson ‘15

It can be easy to get caught up in wardrobe choices and where to go on a night out, without a second thought to safety. But mobile applications are effective ways to have safety in the palm of your hand without the threat of a buzz kill.

Students need to be sure they are headed to safe environments and able to communicate with their friends while out. In order to maintain this constant communication and safety on the weekends, here are some of the apps that students should have ready to go on their smartphones:

Apps are quick to come and go in terms of popularity, but Groupme’s presence has stuck around for quite sometime. Groupme is a group-messaging app that students have become accustomed to using to stay in the loop with their friends’ whereabouts. Its convenience is the primary reason for its ability to remain current at Lafayette, as friend groups, Greek organizations, and sports teams are able to keep up with their own group messages.

“Groupme is a good way for everyone to figure out where to meet up on the weekends,” athlete Brigid McGill ‘17 said. “It allows us to think of different activities that will help us bond.”

Once friends are connected through Groupme, it’s imperative to have ways to get from place to place safely. The app Uber allows the user to press a single button, and become connected to a cab company. The simplicity of this app has the power to prevent dangerous driving situations when college students are under the influence or find themselves in a foreign place.

Safety precautions are imperative, but some apps are simply convenient when out at night. Yelp provides users with the ability to see reviews of local establishments and find public spaces like drugstores or banks in the case the students need to make a pit stop or find a touchstone similar to how Wawa acts on campus.

Even with the necessary precautions of Groupme, Uber, and Yelp, students can often get themselves in dangerous situations. An app called Kitestring is groundbreaking in terms of safety for college students. The app ensures that a user gets from one place to another safely. Before going out, the student tells the app a time to check in. If the user doesn’t respond when the app sends the alert, their emergency contact will be reached. The app is revolutionary in that it has the power to prevent extremely dangerous situations including sexual assaults and other misdemeanors.

“We get these emails from Public Safety about horrible things that happen near campus,” said Erica Swinton ‘16. “I think anything that could help prevent these incidences would be beneficial.”

Students can become so caught up in the excitements of going out that they do not have the time to take basic safety measures. These apps make that easy, so there is no excuse. Be safe.