On January 30, join SDM for a free webinar, “Combatting Security Challenges of an Urban University” to learn how the University of Pennsylvania used security to overcome negative perception.

In the mid-1990s, the Penn’s application numbers were down, thanks in part to parents’ concerns about its location in West Philadelphia, an urban area known for violent crime.

Wanting to avoid the stigma that plagues many higher education institutions while continuing to foster its unique urban open-campus environment, the university had to figure out how to combat the image of a great school in a bad location.

The solution was a neighborhood initiative program that looked beyond campus security. As a result, Penn has been ranked No. 1 in the higher education sector in Security 500 for seven consecutive years.

During the webinar, Maureen Rush, Penn’s vice president for public safety and superintendent of Penn Police, will share the framework for building Penn’s neighborhood initiative program, as well as how to build and gain support from the community “beyond the university walls.” Attendees will also learn unique ways to partner with local law enforcement to meet both organizations’ needs and how to grow professionalism within their teams.

The webinar, part of the “2014 Solutions by Sector Series,” will begin at 2 p.m. EST on January 30 and last 60 minutes. To register, click here. Can’t make it on that day and time? The webinar will be available on-demand afterward.