Alert FAQ

Who can get PennWest California Alerts?

The PennWest California Alerts service is designed for students, staff, and faculty who will be affected directly by an emergency on the university campus or proximate areas.

Why should I get PennWest California Alerts?

Text messaging is more reliable in emergency situations when communication systems reach high capacity. Text messages will get through when phone calls won't.

You will receive alerts anywhere, even when you do not have access to a computer.

Will my cell phone number be kept confidential?

Yes. PennWest California Alerts service cell phone numbers are not shared or sold to any other systems or services.

How many PennWest California Alerts text messages will I receive?

PennWest California Alerts text messages will be sent only to alert you of emergency situations in which there is an imminent threat to public safety. The exact number is difficult to predict, but there should be very few. The University will test the system once each semester by sending a test alert.

What do I need to get PennWest California Alerts and how much does it cost?

You only need a cell phone with text messaging capabilities. There is no charge to users for signing up. Individual cell phone plans will apply normal charges for receiving the text message, which will be the user's responsibility.

How do I sign up for PennWest California Alerts?

To register, you do need to have your cell phone with you. Complete the online form. You will be asked to create your own user name and password (note that this has no relationship to your PennWest California computing user name and password). You will receive a text message immediately following your sign up that will include a 4-digit validation code. You must enter the validation code on the confirmation web page and hit the "validate" button. You will then automatically be forwarded to a "thank you" page. The validate button also creates your own personal account where you can enter a second mobile phone number for receiving text message alerts. You can also update personal contact information under your personal account.

What will the PennWest California Alerts tell me?

A short text message will state the type of threat and indicate a suggested action. Because the messages must be brief, you will always be directed to go to the university's web site where details will be available.

An important reminder: The PennWest California web site is the primary and most complete resource for current emergency information. The PennWest California Alerts provide notification of situations posing imminent, physical threats to the university community. This new mass notification system complements the existing communications plan at PennWest California, which includes various communications tools such as the PennWest California web site, e-mail alerts, CUTV, other local media, and the university hotline.