Campus Safety and Security

The safety and security of our students, faculty, staff, and guests is our number one priority. Our goal is to provide a safe living and learning environment.

We provide and support general and emergency services and enforce campus rules and regulations 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. Our officers work with and assist area law enforcement agencies with violations of North Carolina and federal laws both on and off-campus.

How to report a crime or emergency

Call 911 and/or Campus Security (828.898.8756) if:

  • You see fire or smell smoke
  • You witness someone vandalizing property or stealing
  • You witness someone hurting another person
  • You see something suspicious
  • You have something stolen
  • Someone becomes injured or ill

Even if you aren’t sure security is needed, call anyway and let us assess the situation.

Monitoring Coronavirus
Announcement (2.28.20)

Lees-McRae officials are monitoring a potential public health threat in the form of a coronavirus—Novel (New) Coronavirus 2019 or COVID-19. Coronaviruses are an extremely common cause of colds or other respiratory infections. Thousands of cases of the COVID-19 strain have been documented around the world—predominantly in China and other parts of Asia. While cases have been reported in the U.S., there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in North Carolina at this time.

This coronavirus is considered to be a serious public health threat, but the immediate risk to the general American public is considered low. This winter, individuals are more likely to contract influenza B (the flu): one in 10 people have influenza each flu season. Basic infectious disease principles are key to containing the spread of any virus.

Students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to:

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water, and for at least 20 seconds each time.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are ill.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces that are frequently touched.
  • Seek medical care if you have a fever, cough, or difficulty breathing.

The college will observe any state or federal advisories for preventing or responding to any outbreaks. Potential effects to college operations include modified courses, or canceled public events and athletic competitions.

For more information on COVID-19, please visit the NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), or the World Health Organization (WHO).

Emergency Contacts

Director of Safety and Security 
HD Stewart
828.260.0505

Campus Security Office
828.898.8756

Banner Elk Police Department
828.898.4300

Avery County Sheriff’s Office
828.733.3858

Cannon Memorial Hospital
828.737.7000

Emergency Alert System

The college makes use of a multi-layer notification system powered by Rave Mobile Safety to alert the campus community to inclement weather, school closings, and/or other serious threats.

All current students, faculty, and staff are automatically enrolled in the alert system using their college-issued email addresses. Users are encouraged to add mobile phone numbers to their profile in order to receive text alerts and updates.

Lees-McRae invites parents, vendors, or other community members to subscribe to the emergency notifications. Text LMCALERT to 67283 to register.

The system is tested every semester, but is never used for non-emergency purposes. Personal contact information is kept confidential and will not be shared with third-parties. Standard or other messaging charges may apply to text messages depending upon your wireless carrier.

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    General Safety Tips

    • Avoid walking alone at night and always walk in groups
    • Keep your doors locked even when you are in your room
    • Always have your keys out and ready when you approach your vehicle or residence hall
    • Don’t let strangers follow you into your residence hall, and contact the security office if you have any safety concerns
    • Alert a friend or roommate of your whereabouts and your expected return whether you are leaving for a few hours or a few days
    • Keep an eye out for wildlife and never approach bears or other wild animals
    • Stay alert and be aware of your surroundings
    • Report any suspicious activity to Campus Security (828.898.8756)
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    Winter Safety Tips

    Winter in Banner Elk is a beautiful time of the year, but it is also a time when winter storms and sub-zero temperatures pose a threat. We want to offer some winter safety tips to keep you safe during the winter season.

    • Wear proper footwear when walking on snow and ice. Boots or well-insulated shoes that are waterproof with non-slip tread are ideal.
    • Take small steps to keep your balance and avoid slipping.
    • Do not text or talk on your phone while walking on snow or ice.
    • Hold handrails when they are available for added support.
    • Avoid walking underneath icicles. As melting occurs, falling icicles are especially dangerous.
    • Walk on designated walkways as much as possible.
    • Avoid driving in snowy or icy conditions if at all possible. If it is necessary for you to travel, make sure that your tires are in good shape and that all essential features are working properly (lights, brakes, etc.).
    • Keep your gas tank as full as possible and your cell phone fully charged when traveling during inclement weather.
    • Keep a winter safety kit in your car that includes a flashlight, blanket, first aid kit, bottles of water and snacks.

    If you need assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact Campus Security at 828.898.8756.