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College-Friendly EDC


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#1 JSmith76

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 07:33 PM

Hey everyone,

I'm going to be starting college at Mercer University in Georgia this fall, and I have some mild concerns about the security of the campus. It's located in Macon, Georgia, which has a somewhat high crime rate. The campus has also had a few robberies and burglaries in the past few years.

This has all made me think about what I can do to improve my own safety there. It is a gun-free campus, which precludes my carrying a firearm for protection. Any advice on protective gear, EDC items, etc is appreciated.

 



#2 MightyP

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Posted 28 April 2016 - 07:46 PM

Regardless of the tools you carry, your situational awareness will be your best defense. Don't have your head in your phone. Don't walk around with your hood up or headphones on. Take time to pause and look at what's going on around you as you move from one area to another. And trust your instincts. If it feels wrong, find someplace else to be.

Pepper spray, if allowed on campus, is probably your best bet for a force multiplier. Easy to carry;easy to use; and much less scary to liberals. Knives can be useful, but you'll want training if you're going to carry one specifically for defense.

Edited by MightyP, 28 April 2016 - 07:47 PM.

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#3 JSmith76

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 04:26 PM

Situational awareness advice is duly noted. I will probably look into pepper spray as well as a tactical light. I'm not sure where I could get training on knife fighting, there's a Krav Maga place near me but they don't really like to teach us how to use blades.

I'm also considering an umbrella or walking stick for a touch of class as well as extending my reach.



#4 pira114

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Posted 29 April 2016 - 11:53 PM

One of the "tactical" pens might be in order. I only have experience with the 5.11 one. Came free with an order years ago. I carry it every day.

Pros: writes good, uses standard refills, and I was able to stab it through about 1/4 of a full size phone book.

Cons: It does look tactical. And the top of it sticks out a bit far from the top of a pen pocket. You'd likely want to carry it in a more concealed manner
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#5 Koopa

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Posted 03 May 2016 - 07:25 PM

I went to a gun-friendly college, and never felt that I was in danger. Hmm, imagine that. 

 

You're definitely not in the best neighborhood, so keep your head on a swivel. If your face is down in your phone and your earbuds are in, you look like an easy target. The more aware and prepared you appear, the harder of a target you will seem like. 

 

Pepper spray and a light are great options, as already mentioned. I would avoid blade fighting if at all possible (just my preference). Krav is fantastic (I picked that up my senior year in college).

 

Become intimately familiar with your surroundings. Know every building, every street, every police station, anywhere you might be able to run for help. Also know when something is out of place. Know which streets are lit at night and which are dark. Try not to establish patterns in your travel routes/times (sometimes this is hard with a class schedule). Situational awareness is king. 

 

Lastly, since your campus is "gun free" it may become an easy target for violence in the form of an active shooter. Play the what-if game for every classroom you sit in. Know your primary and secondary exit routes. If you have to jump out a window, what will you land on? Where will you go from there? Have a plan to blockade the classroom door. Carry a tourniquet, Israeli bandage, and combat gauze in your school bag. Have a plan to fight back. Rehearse it in your head every time you sit down in class. What if the attack comes from within the room (classmate)? Know the room number so you can call the police for help (have the campus police phone number stored in your phone). Count the number of people in the room before class starts. Look around and see who looks like they may be helpful to you in an emergency. Look around and see who is totally oblivious. 

 

The list goes on, but the common denominator is that everything comes down to mindset more than equipment. Good luck in your studies!!


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#6 spenceman

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Posted 17 May 2016 - 07:25 PM

I'm pretty sure this is the only authorized self-defense implement allowed on college campuses.

 

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Seriously though, all of the above advice about situational awareness, martial arts, and non/less-lethal tools are spot on.


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#7 Quietmike

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Posted 19 May 2016 - 10:47 PM

Practice looking for makeshift weapons in every room you enter and that are within easy reach.
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#8 ArkansasFan

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Posted 31 May 2016 - 10:37 PM

I'm coming around to the idea of tactical pens although any steel pen is likely a good choice. I've been carrying them since before "tactical pen" was in the lingo.

Another option might be a good flashlight. I've read some less than ideal information on using strobe functions to disorient an evil doer. Many of them could conceivably substitute for a multipurpose tactical item.

Additionally, if you're really concerned about active shooters a bullet resistant clipboard or even ballistic insert might suffice to protect your torso.

As others have said, situational awareness is key. Keep the earphones out of your head, look, listen, smell, note what doesn't fit and why, what you could do about it, and as we said when I was in law enforcement, know how to quickly un-ass the area.

Also, endurance, stress inoculation, and practical martial arts are always helpful when you're up against a threat. If you're truly interested in self-preservation, identifying adequate classmates/body shields could be helpful as well.

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