Onondaga Community College Alert FAQ’s

What is Onondaga Community College Alert?  Onondaga Community College Alert is a mass notification system that has the capability of sending emergency communications to campus community members via text message, email, and mobile and office/home telephone.  Communication is sent simultaneously to all available contact points for each person. Please note that the accuracy of the contact information provided to the College by members of the community is crucial to the successful notification of an emergency.  Everyone is asked to make sure that all contact information provided to the College is current and accurate.  
What constitutes an “Emergency” on campus?  Any situation in which College officials believe that the health or safety of the campus community is at risk may result in an alert.  Some examples include:

  • Fire – large-scale fire in a campus building(s), wildfires, local community or industry that endangers campus. 
  • Hazardous Material – a dangerous material (e.g. chemical) spreading from a contained area. 
  • Major Road Closing/Incident – unanticipated event that would disrupt safe passage to or from campus. 
  • Personal Safety Incidents – situations that include acts of violence.  Any situation, on or off campus, that, in the judgment of College officials constitutes an imminent threat to the community. 
  • Bomb threat/Suspicious Package –a package that is reasonably believed to contain material harmful to persons or property. 
  • Utility Failure – a major disruption or damage to utilities including gas, electrical or water that constitute a serious threat to health and/or human safety. 
  • Severe Weather –conditions to include flooding, snow/ice/cold, thunderstorm, strong wind, or tornado that constitutes a serious threat to health and/or human safety. 
  • Civil Disturbance – large group disrupting campus activities in which the safety of participants or observers are at risk.

If a message is sent using Onondaga Community College Alert, what can I expect?  

You will receive a notification through all phone numbers and email addresses you list on your profile in WebAdvisor. For example, if you enter two phone numbers, you will get the message on both phones. The system will also send text messages to those phones that are capable of receiving them. 

  • Phone messages: The phone number that will display is: (315) 498-2356 
  • Email messages: The email message you receive will be from: Campus Safety and Security
  • Text messages: The text message will display as: 23177 or 63079

How does Onondaga Community College Alert get my phone and email information?

Your phone and email information is taken directly from what you have provided to the College. It is very important that you ensure that the College has the most up- to-date information.  Updates to your information may be made via WebAdvisor.

How do I check and update my contact information for Onondaga Community College Alert?  

Students: Log on to WebAdvisor through the Student website, http://students.sunyocc.edu/ click on “Address and Phone number change request”, once information is updated, click SUBMIT.

Employees: Log on to WebAdvisor through the Employee website, http://employees.sunyocc.edu/  click on “Address and Phone number change request”, once information is updated, click SUBMIT.

How often is the contact information updated in Onondaga Community College Alert?

Changes made to your contact information via WebAdvisor will be updated in the Onondaga Community College Alert system on a nightly basis.

Is Onondaga Community College Alert the only means of communicating with campus community members in the event of an emergency?

No. The Onondaga Community College Alert system is just one tool that assists the College to quickly notify the community of an emergency situation.  The College web site, campus monitors, and local media are also possible sources of information in a crisis.  Additionally, the College may use a public address system located in common areas of public use. This audible alert system is primarily meant for visitors to campus.  Members of the College community should remember to keep their contact information updated via WebAccess and expect to receive alerts via the Onondaga Community College Alert system in the event of an emergency. 

How will I be reached if I turn my phone off during class?

All College classrooms are equipped with an internal phone system.  Calls may be received on these phones and calls internal to the College may be made from them which includes calls to Campus Safety.  Onondaga Community College Alerts will be sent to these phones. 

How many phone attempts will Onondaga Community College Alert make and will it leave a message on an answering machine or voicemail?

Onondaga Community College Alert system will attempt to try each phone number a maximum of three (3) times. Yes, the Alert system will leave a message on voicemail or an answering machine. 

How can I get accurate, current information regarding an event?

Onondaga Community College officials will make every effort to provide updated information to the community through the College’s website as soon as possible.  You may visit www.sunyocc.edu to check for updates.  You may also contact the Campus Safety and Security Department’s non-emergency phone line at (315) 498-2478.  Please recognize that during an emergency on campus, it is the priority of Campus Safety and College officials to focus on resolving the situation that caused the emergency and may have limited ability to offer information at the time you call.  We ask that you be patient and continue to check the Onondaga Community College website for updates.   

Is a second message sent out at the conclusion of an emergency event? 

Generally, yes.  When the situation is resolved a message that indicates that any danger has passed will be sent.

For parents/supporters - How do I contact my student if cell phone service is unavailable?

If you are unable to reach your student during an emergency situation on campus, please know that College officials are actively encouraging students to reach out to their family members as soon as they possibly can. Please exercise patience in emergency situations as mobile phone towers can be overwhelmed with emergency communications and others also trying to reach their loved ones.  If you are local, we ask that you refrain from coming to campus as the presence of additional individuals may complicate matters for emergency personnel and place you at risk.  


In the event of an emergency, the College will make every effort to reach all students and staff through the contact information submitted to Onondaga Community College Alert.  However, the College acknowledges that technical limitations such as overtaxed communications systems, transmission errors, and cellular telephone roaming and out of range areas, as well as human delays in issuing emergency messages may limit the effectiveness of the system and delay or prevent the issuance or receipt of messages to all or certain users. Onondaga Community College will make every effort to inform all users of an emergency in a timely and appropriate manner, but cannot guarantee performance of the system and disclaims liability for messages delayed or not received due to technological limitations or human error.