USC was officially designated a safe community Wednesday morning by the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre on Community Safety Promotion in a ceremony in front of Tommy Trojan.
A WHO safe community designation indicates that a community has shown a strong network of collaboration that works toward the safety and wellness of its residents.
President C.L. Max Nikias, Vice President for Student Affairs Michael L. Jackson and members of the U.S. National Safety Council and Safe Communities Canada were in attendance at the ceremony.
“It’s about personal safety, but it is much more than that. It is about helping each other to flourish; it’s about looking out for each other,” Nikias said. “I’m excited that now, on a global stage, with this official recognition our USC community has joined with other neighborhoods around the world.”
Donna Stein-Harris, director of the National Safety Council’s Safe Communities America efforts, spoke about USC’s place as a safety example for other universities.
“We know that USC is up to the task of sustaining this momentum for years to come,” Stein-Harris said. “The enthusiasm and inclusiveness is exemplary.”
Paul Kells, the founder and president of Safe Communities Canada, presented the university with a WHO flag and the official plaque designating the university as a safe community.
“You have truly engaged the community around you,” Kells said. “That is what is so magnificent, and that is actually the spirit and the framework that this will succeed with in the future.”