CCC texting emergency alerts

By Gabriel Monte: CNJ staff writer

Clovis Community College students can now receive emergency alerts via text message.

CCC president John Neibling told Board of Trustee members Wednesday that students will receive text alerts and e-mail notifications for school closures and emergency conditions.

“If something bad happens here, we can say, ‘Don’t come,’” he said.

The service will be available starting this semester, according to CCC Vice President of Information Technology Mike Schmidt.

Students can register their e-mail addresses or cell phone numbers for the service on the college’s Web site. Schmidt said cell phones must have a text messaging service.

Students or their parents can sign up two cell phone numbers and two e-mail addresses. Neibling said interested members of the community also can sign up for the service.

The college is contracting the service from Arlington, Texas-based NetStrategies and Management. Schmidt said the college paid about $5,000 to use the service and will pay $1,300 annually.

The alert service is part of the college’s emergency preparedness measures implemented after the Virginia Tech shooting in April last year. The plan included the installation of door locks on the inside of classrooms, Neibling said. He said the college has asked legislators for about $200,000 for a public announcement system to alert students on campus of an emergency.