Police Chief Ken Kennedy and Sgt. Justin Keller taught University Experience classes how to handle a potential intruder on campus during a series of hour-long sessions in Phelps Theater on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Ken Kennedy talks to freshmen about ALICE training on Wednesday morning.

Ken Kennedy talks to freshmen about ALICE training on Wednesday morning.

The sessions focused on ALICE training , giving students vital skills to help them make a more informed decision when confronted with an intruder in a classroom. ALICE stands for alert, lockdown, inform, counter and evacuate. It teaches potential victims to fight back using techniques like throwing objects, barricading entryways and swarming. These strategies are designed to encourage active resistance as a means of last resort, as escape is the most effective action.

In addition to the freshmen attending the presentations in Phelps, nearly 70 more watched an online training video. In all, 737 students participated.

“At MSSU, we take the safety of our students very seriously. While there are some things out of our control, like a tornado or random acts of violence, there are always things we can do to increase our odds of survival,” said Teresa Thompson, director of First-Year Experience. “That is why we utilize and teach the ALICE training on our campus.

“In all aspects of university life, it’s important to teach our freshmen academic skills and social skills. We believe that in today’s society, it is also essential and wise to teach survival skills.”