updated 1/12/2011 1:17:02 PM ET 2011-01-12T18:17:02

Following the devastation of a catastrophic F-3 tornado at the College, Campus Safety Director, Raymond Thrower finds NaviGate to be the ideal solution.

NEW PHILADELPHIA, Ohio, Jan. 12, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Gustavus Adolphus College (Gustavus), a private liberal arts college located in Saint Peter, Minn., has selected NaviGate™, the critical information management system from Lauren Innovations. Gustavus will use NaviGate to expand and improve on its emergency and safety plans, and to enhance coordination and interaction with local first responders. NaviGate will further support the college's focus on meeting the highest standards for incident management reporting and training.

On March 1, 1998, the Gustavus campus was hit by a category F-3 tornado causing more than $50 million in damage. Emergency plans, building plans and business continuity plans, all of which were kept in paper-versions were inaccessible due to the damage to the facilities. After a mere 29 days working as the Director of Campus Safety, Raymond Thrower, along with the Gustavus college community, began the process of rebuilding. Since the tornado, Multi-Hazard Emergency Preparedness planning and training has been a high priority for the administration at Gustavus. To further enhance the institutions commitment to emergency preparedness, Thrower began looking for a Web-based emergency management system that could also be used for day-to-day administration of documentation and security procedures. The NaviGate system, with emergency and incident management modules, as well as secure off-site storage, will allow the college to produce accurate and timely incident reports and keep all critical emergency plans at the fingertips of a user with an Internet connection, no matter their location.

"I was looking for a one-stop-shopping, web-based, highly secured, integrated emergency management system," commented Thrower, "It took me almost 13 years, but NaviGate fit the bill completely. When the tornado hit, we lost everything; all of our emergency plans were on paper, but even if they had been stored electronically, the computers were inaccessible, our servers were down and we had no back-up location off-campus. When you find a system that will allow you to store your critical information, link your facility up with first responders—who can also be set up to have permission-based access to building and emergency plans within your system—and top it off with real-time reporting at the end of the day, you know you've found something special. NaviGate gives us the opportunity for our institution to be proactive in an emergency situation. Because once we go from a proactive to reactive state, it is already too late."

NaviGate by Lauren Innovations stores users' information in two secure locations—one on the east-coast and the other in the South West. "I was impressed by the fact that the information put into NaviGate is stored in not one but two off-site locations," continued Thrower, "What happened at Gustavus, and later in New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina, made it clear that storing data in a single-location, even regionally, wasn't failsafe."

While the emergency capabilities of NaviGate set Gustavus up to take on another campus catastrophe, Thrower was also looking for a system that his public safety personnel could use on a day-to-day basis for both incident management and training purposes. NaviGate's Incident Management module provides users with the ability to log and report on any incident or crime. Additionally, the data captured can be analyzed, reported on and visually presented on existing site and building plans. "There is a real need for transparency in campus incident reporting," says Thrower, who has also served as the past president of the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators (IACLEA). "An incident report in NaviGate can alert me to a high amount of automobile break-ins on a specific campus lot; it can further drill down to show what time of the day this is more likely to occur. This knowledge gives me the ability to assign frequent patrols in that area or install a camera in the lot to alleviate the problem."

Keeping personnel trained and up-to-date on all procedures was also at the top of Thrower's must-have list. "I don't see much point in having a procedure if no one knows how to follow it," says Thrower. "Having a plan on how to handle an active shooter or any other multi-hazard situation on campus is one thing, having a team who is fully trained on what to do in that situation is quite another. With NaviGate, I can assign each of my officers training content and then follow it up with a test." NaviGate by Lauren Innovations allows users to transfer existing Sharable Content Object Reference Model (SCORM) compliant materials directly into its Learning Management module. New content can also be created, assigned and tracked directly through the system.

"The reason NaviGate works best for us is two-fold," Thrower explained. "The incident reporting and learning modules allow our people to use the system every day; and having a system that is easy to use on a daily basis is the key. If the time comes again where they need to be ready to move in an emergency situation, they'll be able to act in an instant and not scramble around trying to locate user-names and passwords—or worse—binders, phone numbers and action plans."

NaviGate by Lauren Innovations is designed to manage and apply the critical information any organization needs to effectively run and optimize their organization.  From day-to-day operations and learning management to compliance and safety initiatives, NaviGate allows for secure, instant online access to information anytime, anywhere. Navigate allows users to take immediate, focused action in a time of crisis. Further, NaviGate facilitates and enhances regulatory compliance for any organization in any environment, including all corporate, market and governmental requirements. NaviGate communicates critical information to the appropriate personnel and provides online learning, training and testing to those on existing, new and changed information.

About Gustavus Adolphus College

Gustavus Adolphus College is a private liberal arts college in St. Peter, Minn., that prepares 2,500 undergraduates for lives of leadership, service, and lifelong learning. The oldest Lutheran college in Minnesota, Gustavus was founded in 1862 by Swedish immigrants and named for Swedish King Gustav II Adolf. At Gustavus, students receive personal attention in small-sized classes and engage in collaborative research with their professors. Fully accredited and known for its strong science, writing, music, athletics, study-abroad, and service-learning programs, Gustavus hosts a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa and is internationally recognized for its annual Nobel Conference.

Raymond H. Thrower, Jr.has thirty plus years experience in higher education public safety. He has served as Director of Campus Safety at Gustavus Adolphus College in Saint Peter, Minnesota for the past twelve years. Prior to Gustavus, he served as Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police for Davidson College, in Davidson, North Carolina. Before Davidson College, he was Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police for Queens University in Charlotte, North Carolina. Ray holds a Bachelor's in Criminal Justice from Sacred Heart College.

About NaviGate™ by Lauren Innovations

NaviGate™ by Lauren Innovations is a highly secure, web–based system that can be used by any organization to collect, manage, and apply their unique essential information through integrated document, incident, and learning management functions. Through controlled, role- and permission-based access, NaviGate optimizes daily operations and emergency response, with secure, instant access to information at any time, from anywhere. Based on its proven effectiveness, NaviGate has received SAFETY Act designation from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and has been given a highly effective rating by the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) Laboratory. For more news and upcoming events, visit www.laureninnovations.com , or stop by the NCS4 site to view the full evaluation and methodology at http://lab.ncs4.com . Lauren Innovations is dedicated to the development and enhancement of technologies and services that contribute to a safer, healthier and more secure world. Headquartered in New Philadelphia, Ohio, Lauren Innovations is a subsidiary of Lauren International.

Chellsea Mastroine
Marketing Coordinator
Lauren Innovations
330.308.7306 d
330.339.1515 f
laureninnovations.com

Lauren Innovations ( www.laureninnovations.com ) is dedicated to the development and enhancement of technologies and services that contribute to a safer, healthier and more secure world. Headquartered in New Philadelphia, Ohio, Lauren Innovations is a subsidiary of Lauren International ( www.laureninternational.com ). For more information, call 866.861.7400.

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