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Students worried about crime will be able to take their concerns to the University's safety and security policy makers in a public forum today. Several University administrators, including Senior Vice President Marna Whittington, University Police Captain John Richardson and Director of Victim Support Services Ruth Wells, will serve as panelists in the open forum. Students will be able to ask questions and raise concerns about the University's efforts to prevent crime and about ways to protect themselves and their homes. The forum was organized entirely by College junior Lara Leibman. Leibman said she became concerned about crime on campus after her house was broken into this fall. Leibman said most students do not take the time to learn about crime and how to prevent it until they become victims. She said she hopes the forum will convince students to "take an active stand about fighting crime." Richardson, who will represent University Police, said he is happy to help with the forum and help students learn about the University's anti-crime efforts. "I think if they want to have a forum and want to know these things. . . about all the resources we have available, I think it's an excellent idea," Richardson said. "They can get some idea of what we're doing and how it's being attacked." "With the cast that she's got together, she's touched on all the resources we have available," he added. "It will give them an opportunity to ask some of the key players some of the key questions." Richardson said the forum could be helpful for administrators as well as students. "Perhaps we can learn something, and in turn, they can learn something," he said. Leibman said she has met with all of the panelists and has sat in on a meeting of the University Council's Safety and Security Committee. She said even though organizing the forum has taken a great deal of work, she is pleased with the support she has received from administrators. "Everybody's always talking about how Penn needs to be a community," she said. "We can't be a community unless we join together and I think fighting crime is one way to join together as a community." The forum is scheduled for today from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. in Bodek Lounge in Houston Hall.

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