January 3, 2018
Dear Cranbrook Friends and Family,
Happy New Year to you and yours! I hope you all enjoyed a happy, healthy, and peaceful holiday season. The hustle and bustle continues here at Cranbrook as we head into the second half of the academic year. Before our students return from winter break, I'd like to take a moment to share some thoughts on the many safety, health, and welfare initiatives taking place around campus.
To help ensure the well-being of our students, staff, and all visitors, Cranbrook continually works to enhance security efforts at the Schools and throughout the Community. I am pleased with the collaborative relationship Cranbrook's Public Safety Team has with Bloomfield Hills Public Safety, and am very grateful for the work they are doing to keep our campus safe. Through cooperative efforts such as on-campus fire evolution training, dispatch shadowing programs, and suspicious package handling, we have been able to increase our security department's knowledge of best practices while improving our partnership with the City.
At the Upper School, Bloomfield Hills Public Safety Officer Chris Furlong led a series of presentations this past fall educating our students on the dangers of texting and driving, underage drinking, and vaping. Cranbrook has been fortunate to have Officer Furlong involved in several security and safety initiatives at Cranbrook over the past years.
Continuing Cranbrook's tradition of leadership and innovation, we have also rolled out the ALICE (which stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, and Evacuate) response program to all divisions of the Community. This training empowers individuals with options in the event of a violent intruder. This newly enacted method of response will be introduced to our students across all divisions early this year. For more information on this program, and an overview of the training that faculty and staff have undergone, as well as what training will look like for our students, I encourage you to take a look at these three brief YouTube videos with Cranbrook's Director of Public Safety, Calvin Vincent:
Meetings with our girls' residential students are occurring on an annual basis to discuss the importance of familiarizing yourself with your surroundings, what to do and where to go if you need help, and other general safety tips. Throughout our residence halls, Cranbrook is striving to create a home-like atmosphere through aesthetic and programmatic improvements. Conversations and training around topics such as diversity, relationships, and gender and sexual identity empower our students and faculty to talk about these issues. Informal meetings and open-door policies are in place so that students have a friendly environment for discussion with faculty and their peers.
Other ongoing security initiatives include the updating and replacement of campus emergency lights, as well as new campus dorm alarm and access control systems. One of our ongoing life safety projects consists of replacing all interior emergency lights with new LED systems. These units will create a stronger, more effective LED light, decrease the battery backup load, while also implementing a more energy efficient product. We have also installed new alarm systems in our Upper School Dorms, and added access control systems on all campus dorms at both the Upper School and at the Art Academy.
Another wellness initiative that we rolled out this academic year is individual counseling sessions provided on campus for the convenience and support of Academy of Art students. The counselor is scheduled six hours per week for appointments and walk-in sessions. At the Institute of Science, perhaps the most public of Cranbrook's many venues, work continues on updating fire, communication and security systems in many areas, including the installation of video cameras. Staff safety and security training has also been a focus at the Institute as well as at Cranbrook Art Museum. Clearly, there is always more that we can do and will do to keep our campus and all of our visitors and employees safe.
"Community" is much more than just a part of our official name; it's the soul of Cranbrook. As a community, we can work together to make sure that Cranbrook remains a safe, educational, and enriching space for many generations to come. I hope you will take the opportunity to visit Cranbrook often this year. From the art enthusiast to the nature lover, the scientist to the researcher and everywhere in between, there is something special here for everyone during each and every season. To discover the many exhibitions, programs and events taking place around campus, please be sure to follow our social media channels, download the Cranbrook app and check out our monthly E-Newsletters (links to each of these are included below my signature).
Thank you for being a part of our Community and all that you do for our National Historic Landmark campus. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to ensure your experience with Cranbrook is enjoyable and fulfilling.
My best wishes to you and yours in the New Year!