USM hosts "50 Shades of Safe": women's safety strategies program for female students

USM hosts "50 Shades of Safe": women's safety strategies program for female students

HATTIESBURG, MS - Lori Fullbright, a two-time Emmy award-winning news anchor and crime reporter from Tulsa, Oklahoma, travels around the country delivering crime safety presentations.

"I have covered the crime beat for 24 years," Fullbright said. "Based on all the things I've learned interviewing victims of violent crimes and interviewing criminals themselves, I try to go around and teach young people and adults what they can do to better protect themselves from criminals."

Fullbright was just one of the featured guests at University of Southern Mississippi's "50 Shades of Safe."

"50 Shades of Safe" was a women's safety strategies program for college women.

"I tell people you've got to have your head on a swivel," Fullbright said. "You've always got to be looking around and thinking that there may be a threat out there. We don't have to live in fear but we do have to live prepared."

USM theater students performed short skits to teach students how to recognize the warning signs of potentially dangerous relationships.

"Being on a college campus, attacks, rapes, all types of violence and robberies happen and a lot of college campuses hide them," USM Theater Student Kat McDaniel said.

"So for us to present and let people know you need to be aware of your surroundings and be aware of your relationships."

Students also had the opportunity to participate in various break-out sessions and receive information from different tables.

"I learned I need to be much more cautious in the daylight hours and not just at night," USM Senior Karrie Wood said.

"It's OK to help people sometimes, but when there are red flags or we have a gut instinct that you know this situation might be a little sticky, we should always try to avoid it," USM Junior Jasmine Dixon said.

Presenters like Fullbright said in any dangerous situation it's important to have a survival mindset.

Lori Fullbright Safety Tips

  • You  must be able to give a detailed description and identify the suspect
  • Ask yourself why a stranger is asking you for help
  • If a robber tells you to give them your belongings, give them your belongings
  • Don’t ever answer the door for a stranger, but don’t pretend you are not home. Make noise.
  • If you are in danger it’s important to make noise. Scream, yell or holler.
  • Car alarms aren’t always the best way to signal that you are in danger. Make noise my screaming, yelling, or hollering.
  • Ask yourself why a stranger is asking your for help
  • Keep your valuables on your person in public places. Place like grocery stores are hot spots for purse theft.

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