Date of Award

January 2017

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Safety, Security, and Emergency Management

First Advisor

E. Scott Dunlap

Department Affiliation

Safety, Security, and Emergency Management

Second Advisor

Troy A. Rawlins

Department Affiliation

Safety, Security, and Emergency Management

Third Advisor

Ryan K. Baggett

Department Affiliation

Safety, Security, and Emergency Management


The purpose of this qualitative and quantitative research study was to explore the factors and outcomes associated with the lack of emergency preparedness activities related to college campuses. Within the context of pertinent literature was the confirmation of existing campus emergency action plans but the stated behavioral expectations contained in those plans raised questions related to effective functional performance. Additionally, the apparent refusal of college campus populations to actively participate in the preparedness process while offing a myriad of justifications for their avoidance has raised a number of concerns related to the achievement of desired positive outcomes. Discussion of attitudes and their effects on a minimalist approach to campus emergency action planning and preparedness activities has revealed a theme of denial or procrastination within the assumption of assignment to others for their intervention.

The research survey conducted with this study disclosed a range of performance responses from excellent to lackadaisical. Thematically, the survey revealed that without adequate commitment from the highest ranking officials at their respective institutions, appropriate response and recovery operations are doubtful. Further review of data from the survey revealed a skewed result in that respondents were all administrators. Additionally, only two year institutions responded. Nonetheless, the results of the survey offered insight into the presumption of institutional preparedness based on previous experience. Conclusions based on all gathered research have indicated that regardless of the causes of surrounding campus emergency incidents, there will be outcomes directly influenced by the preceding preparedness

activities. The accolades or consequences will be reflective of the preparedness efforts or lack thereof.