AUBURN, Wash. — When choosing a college, it’s important to consider all factors that might impact your comfort level on campus — whether you grew up in the suburbs or a major city, starting postsecondary school will be a big adjustment.
One variable that can directly impact campus culture is crime rate, specifically the frequency of robbery.
Note: You can type a college in the search bar in the box below to see robbery data available for each school.
For example, can students wander around campus at night without having to fear being held up? Are they comfortable leaving their belongings in a library cubicle while they take a study break, or do they feel they need to keep items with them all the time?
The perception of safety and how it affects behavior is not always proportionate to the data, but we can begin to measure that aspect of campus culture by looking at specific crime stats.
Using 2014 data from the Office of Postsecondary Education — the most recent statistics available — StartClass, part of the Graphiq network, compiled a list of the 100 colleges with the most reported robberies per 10,000 students. Only colleges with a student body of 5,000 or greater — the official StartClass cutoff for “medium-sized schools” — were included in the following ranking, since the robbery rates of many smaller schools could be drastically affected by a single report.
And according to StartClass, Auburn’s Green River Community College topped the list with most reported robberies per 10,000 students in 2014. Twenty-seven of 7,915 total students were robbed, StartClass reports, averaging out to around 34 students per 10,000.
However, this list only includes data from alleged robberies that occurred on campus, in university-owned or controlled off-campus buildings (called “noncampus”) and all public areas on and adjacent to campus. They do not necessarily reflect prosecutions, convictions or unreported incidents. Robberies reported by local police also factor in, and are reported separately when the university cannot verify where exactly the incidents occurred, whether on campus, noncampus or public property.
The schools in the top 50 are spread across the country, and include both public and private institutions. Explore our list to see if your top choices (or your alma mater) are in the top 50.