Tech-savvy students are really ‘appy to be in Huddersfield.
As new students flock into town for Freshers’ Week, Huddersfield University and West Yorkshire Police have launched a mobile phone app aimed at keeping students safe.
The joint project, believed to be the first of its kind in the UK, has been made possible through a £10,000 grant from West Yorkshire police and crime commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson.
Backed by the Kirklees Community Safety Partnership, students helped create the new app called ‘appy student’, which is free to download and is available for iOS and Android-based smart phones and tablets.
While containing a game based around university life, the app also includes links to safety advice from the police, council and university.
As an extra incentive for students to download the app, the first person to complete the game will win an Apple iPad.
West Yorkshire Police aim to get closer to students as the new academic year begins and are encouraging students to consider becoming special constables.
Mr Burns-Williamson said: “Increasingly the use of social media and new technology will be key to providing instant and useful community safety advice and information.
“This project demonstrates how West Yorkshire is leading the way in using mobile technology to ensure students receive advice on keeping safe at university.”
PC Laura Jackson, who helped devise the project and works with Huddersfield University as the student safety officer, said: “The result of the students’ hard and innovative work is a fantastic final product that’s as useful as it is entertaining.
“We’re always looking for new ways to engage with people and the app is a great tool for reminding students, many of them living away from home for the first time, of the simple things we can all do to keep ourselves and our property safe.
“The only problem is I can’t stop playing the game myself!”