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Credit: Sam Holland

For the 12th year in a row, the University of Pennsylvania's Division of Public Safety was ranked first in safety and security among U.S. higher education institutions in Security Magazine's 2018 "Security 500" list.

Following Penn, New York University and University of Chicago's public safety divisions placed second and third, respectively. Neighboring Drexel University ranked 12th, with Yale University following at 13th. The public safety divisions at other Ivy League institutions, including Harvard, Brown, Cornell, Columbia, Dartmouth, and Princeton, were not on the list. 

Penn's DPS is made up of 180 persons, Penn Today reported, including 121 sworn Penn Police Officers. According to its website, the Penn Police Department is the largest private police department in Pennsylvania and has the the third largest number of sworn police officers across all universities. Over the summer, Penn Police responded to over 160 crimes

Diane Ritchey, editor-in-chief of Security Magazine, told Penn Today that Penn’s Public Safety team has “created a national model to successfully mitigate security and risks, and we are once again thrilled to honor their accomplishments.”

The magazine publishes the list every year to examine leading security programs across the nation. Rankings are published in 20 different categories for different types of enterprises, allowing public safety organizations to see where they stand compared to other organizations in similar fields. 

The list is based on data supplied by each university as well as other public records. Some factors taken into account include security budget, spending, number of employees, and persons protected.