American University is committed to keeping our community safe and secure from possible threats and criminal activity. A safe community depends on the cooperation, involvement, and awareness of everyone on campus. This is a comprehensive listing of programs, policies, and procedures that cover numerous safety and security issues affecting AU. For ease of reference, we have broken them down by topic: Communicate, Learn, Prepare, Prevent, and Respond.


On Campus

Emergency & Non-Emergency Contact Information

On-Campus Police, Medical and Fire Emergencies: (202) 885-3636
On-Campus Non-Emergencies: (202) 885-2527

AU Alerts

AU Alerts communicates warnings and instructions during critical incidents such as natural disasters, fires, gas leaks, and active shooter incidents. Alerts are delivered via text message, e-mail, social media, indoor Alertus beacons, Alertus computer software, and outdoor speakers.  AU students, faculty, and staff are subscribed automatically to AU Alerts. To verify your subscription and update and manage your AU Alerts contact information, log-in with your AU credentials at or go to the AU Emergency Preparedness website

Rave Guardian App

Rave Guardian, available for free on the Apple App Store and Google Play, transforms your Android or iPhone into a personal safety device. It provides a mobile panic button that sends your location and identifying information to AU Police. A safety timer notifies your selected family or friends when it is not deactivated. Anonymous crime tips or photographs can be sent to AU Police via the app. Your custom profile notifies AU Police of your emergency contacts, vehicles, pets, and medical information. Download the iPhone or Android version and log-in with your AU credentials.

Blue Light Emergency Telephones

Located across campus, blue light emergency telephones call AU Police when activated.

Anonymous Tips

Anonymous tips about suspicious activity can be reported online to AU Police.


Follow AU Police @AmericanUPolice and AU Alerts @AUAlerts

Shuttle Buses

All AU shuttle buses have been equipped with AUPD police radios that allow for emergency communication to the Police Communications Center.


City Alerts

Sign up for emergency alerts issued by the District of Columbia, including the Metropolitan Police, at www.HSEMA.DC.Gov.


Follow the D.C. Metropolitan Police, @DCPoliceDept


Self-Defense Training

Free self-defense classes are offered by certified instructors. All classes are held on campus and are in gender-inclusive formats. Custom classes are available for small groups. Sign-up online or e-mail for more information.

Crime Prevention Presentations

Customized crime prevention presentations are available to students, staff and faculty groups, organizations, and offices.  E-mail to set-up a presentation.

Crime Alerts, Daily Crime Log, and Annual Security Report

In compliance with the Jeanne Clery Act, information about campus safety is posted online and available at University Safety & Security Services headquarters. Recent crime alerts and the daily crime log provide information about recent incidents on and near campus. The Annual Security Report provides crime statistics and information on campus safety services.


Active Shooter Preparedness

To be prepared for an active shooter incident on campus, remember “Run, Hide, Fight” as your three options. Review training videos from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the personal preparedness resources available online on American University’s website.

Campus Emergency Plans

AU Emergency Preparedness has developed plans and procedures for critical incidents such as fire, weather emergencies, earthquakes, or criminal incidents. Review the Emergency Procedures Guide online.


Bicycle Registration

Registering your bicycle will assist AU Police with recovering your bicycle if lost or stolen. You can register your bicycle with the Office of Parking & Commuter Services for free online on the parking portal.

Safe Ride to Campus

The Safe Ride to Campus program provides students with a taxi ride back to campus, billed to your student account. Call (202) 885-2527 to request the service.

Safety Escorts

AU Police Officers provide walking and vehicular escorts to and from campus property for all community members. Call (202) 885-2527 to request an escort.

Physical Security

Access control, alarm monitoring, and video surveillance provide additional security on campus through 24/7 monitoring. The physical systems on campus have been expanded significantly and upgraded in the past several years.


Police, Medical, and Fire Response

AU Police provides 24/7 response to all campus properties for police, medical, and fire emergencies.  police officers are commissioned by the Metropolitan Police of the District of Columbia and are fully empowered to enforce the law, investigate criminal acts, and make arrests on campus and at all AU-owned and leased properties within the city. In addition, AU police also may place student conduct charges for violations both on and off campus. AU Police coordinates emergency response with external agencies like the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department.


AU Police Officers and Investigators investigate all crimes that occur on campus. In cooperation with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and D.C. Office of Attorney General, we obtain arrest warrants upon completion of a criminal investigation. Certain crimes require coordination with the Metropolitan Police of the District of Columbia.

Victim Assistance

Victims of any crime are provided care and assistance throughout the criminal justice process. AU Police coordinates counseling resources through Campus Life, Counseling Center, and the Wellness Center, as well as community resources. We provide information and guidance on obtaining protective orders, including transportation to court. Personalized safety plans and self-defense courses are available to crime victims. Call (202) 885-2527 to request victim assistance services from AU Police.

AED – Automatic External Defibrillators

The AU Public Access AED Program provides Automatic External Defibrillators housed in specially marked and strategically located cabinets in key buildings around the campus. AEDs can be used by any member of the public to provide emergency assistance to someone suffering from cardiac arrest. Call (202) 885-2527 to request CPR/AED training from AU Police.

CIT – Crisis Intervention Team Program

AU Police in partnership with the AU Counseling Center, DC’s Department of Behavioral Health, and the DC Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) have created the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program. The AU CIT program has trained more than 100 people—law enforcement officers, mental health professionals, and community partners to support people who may be experiencing a crisis. Call (202) 885-3636 and ask to speak to a CIT officer if you or someone you know may be experiencing a crisis.