CANYON, TX (KFDA) - The latest list West Texas A & M has landed on is a big bonus for many parents and students.
The state of Texas houses over 200 colleges, a few right in our area. But it's WT in the spotlight right now, for ranking high on a list of safest campuses in Texas.
Using data from the U.S. Department of Education, a list was compiled by the education site Niche, of the safest colleges in the Lonestar state. And WT ranked number 11.
These rankings were compiled using campus and local crime rates, as well as alcohol, drug and sexual assault arrest rates.
The biggest crimes on WT's campus are thefts, but Sgt. Jack Hildebrand with Campus Police says they cannot keep crime rates down alone.
"We've been very proactive over the last few years as far as educational programs, training for our students, faculty and staff trying to rescue crime and also it's a joint effort," says Hildebrand. "This is because of our students, faculty and staff and our community that are not afraid to communicate things to us."
WT has some non-traditional approaches to the way they tackle crime. One of their most popular services is one allowing students to be escorted to classes or dorms, if they fear for their safety, especially late at night.
"We provide a lot of active training on alcohol and drug abuse and things of that nature," says Hildebrand. "We have a program called lock out theft where we educate the students how to keep their things locked up, because theft is the major crime we have here on campus."
Though the size of each college likely has a lot to do with their rankings, Hildebrand is glad to see WT on the list, and see campus police efforts paying off. And Hildebrand says one statement in particular stood out to him about these rankings.
"You know, people want to live in areas that they feel safe and that college students want to go to schools they feel safe. makes sense. And we think that that creates that atmosphere and our student body continues to grow in recent years and hopefully we're creating that environment with the police department and working with our community."
To view the entire list, click here.