Frequently Asked Questions
What is Alert EIU?
Alert EIU is a text-messaging system that alerts subscribers, via their cell phones, to emergency situations and (if needed) advises them to take action. The messages are short -- no longer than 160 characters. Messages will focus on possible threats on EIU’s main campus.
Alert EIU is one part of Eastern Illinois University's Campus Emergency Notification System (ENS). With the addition of Alert EIU, the institution has five means of communication with which to notify the campus community in event of an emergency situation.
In addition to Alert EIU, students, faculty and staff should be aware of these methods of communication:
- A siren/public address system will sound a pulse tone, followed by a public address message, if needed. The pulse tone notifies all students, faculty and staff to check their EIU-assigned e-mail and/or Eastern's Web site for important information.
- An e-mail message to all students, faculty and staff will provide information about the emergency.
- A "phone tree" will help notify key individuals in departments/programs on campus; they, in turn, will post this emergency information in accessible locations (where possible) for general public awareness.
- Information will be available via WEIU Radio (88.9 FM)/TV (Channel 51/Mediacom Cable 6).
PLEASE NOTE: The emergency siren/public address system is tested at 10:30 a.m. on the first Tuesday of each month. The siren will sound, followed by a general test message. Its pulse tone is distinct from the normal continuous tone used by Coles County Emergency Services as a severe weather alert. That siren is tested at 10 a.m. on the first Tuesday of each month.
Who can sign up for Alert EIU text messages?
All EIU students, faculty and staff who have valid e-numbers are able to sign up to receive text message alerts.
How soon will one have the capability to receive emergency messages after registering?
Almost immediately. Within minutes of registering, a confirmation text message should be received.
Are there any costs involved for those who register for Alert EIU?
For those who do not have text-messaging contracts as part of their cellular service, there may be a small charge for any text messages that they receive. Individuals should check with their cell phone carriers to determine what those costs may be.
Why should one register?
Eastern Illinois University's Emergency Notification System uses a number of methods of communication to notify its students, faculty and staff of an emergency. Collectively, these different tools (including outdoor warning sirens, e-mail, the EIU Web site and campus media) help ensure that important information is disseminated as quickly as possible.
Will the system be used for commercial purposes?
NO. The Alert EIU text-messaging system will only be used for notification of emergencies requiring immediate action.
Will Eastern periodically test the system?
A test message will be sent near the beginning of each fall and spring semester to ensure the system is working properly.
If one chooses not to register for Alert EIU, will he/she still receive emergency alerts via an EIU-assigned e-mail address?
Registration in Alert EIU does not affect other means of emergency notification offered by the university.