Four Baltimore and Washington, D.C. -area colleges and universities landed on top of a recently compiled list of the 50 most dangerous campuses in the United States.
According to a survey conducted by news Web site The Daily Beast, University of Maryland-Baltimore ranked second, University of Baltimore ranked sixth, Howard University was a close seventh, and Morgan State University captured the final spot in the top ten.
According to the Web site, 458 schools across the country met the criteria based on enrollment size and availability of residential facilities. Rankings were determined by incidents reported to local and campus police in crime data compiled by the U.S. Department of Education, Secret Service and FBI from 2006 to 2008.
“A subjective judgment of violence” was then applied to the data, with murder weighing the most heavily and burglary the least. Totals, they said, were then divided by the number of enrolled students, in an attempt to accurately compare midsize and large campuses.
Clinton Coleman, director of communications at Morgan State, said the school’s ranking is not warranted.
“While the numbers that the website used initially appear to be accurate, if you scratch just beneath the surface you will find that the one murder they pointed to was actually classified as manslaughter. Additionally this shooting and several of the robberies occurred off-campus,” said Coleman. “We are located in an urban area and urban areas carry with them some inherent crime issues and we are aware of that. However, we believe our campus is among the safest of any university in the country that is located in an urban area.”
A total of eight Historically Black Colleges and Universities are on the list including North Carolina Central University, Norfolk State University, North Carolina A&T State University, Southern University, Prairie View A&M University, and Texas Southern University. Conversely, no HBCUs were listed among the 50 safest colleges in the country.