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Missing Student Policy

Missing Student Policy


Rapid and organized response is required when a student is reported missing.  University of Dayton efforts to verify the status of the student and effect a coordinated effort to locate the student are critical to the successful outcome of a missing student situation.

This policy prescribes protocols to be used in the event a student is missing.  The protocols comply with the standards set forth in the Higher Education Opportunity Act.  While the Department of Education requires these procedures specifically for students residing in on-campus housing, this policy applies to all University of Dayton students.


 All faculty, staff, and students.

Policy History

Effective Date:  December 17, 2015

Approval:  February 15, 2024

Policy History: 

  • Approved in its original form:  December 17, 2015
  • Approved as amended:  February 15, 2024

Maintenance of Policy:  Director, Clery Compliance & Records Coordinator, Department of Public Safety


I.  All reports of missing students are taken seriously and investigated fully until the student is located.  Any missing student should be reported to the Department of Public Safety immediately, with as much detail as possible.

II.  Investigation of missing students is a coordinated effort between Student Development and Public Safety, using both university and law enforcement means to determine the location and well-being of the missing student.

a.  Public Safety will lead the missing student investigation.  Any university employee made aware of a missing student should immediately notify the Department of Public Safety.  The missing student's name and identifying information will be entered into law enforcement databases to alert other law enforcement agencies.

    Local law enforcement agencies including but not limited to the City of Dayton Police Department will be notified within 24 hours after determining the student is missing, regardless of whether the student has registered a contact person (see below).  This notification will occur unless the local law enforcement agency was the entity that made the determination of the student's missing status.

b.  Parents or guardians, in addition to any additional confidential contact person designated by the student, may be notified if a student is determined missing.  Parents, guardians, or emergency contacts may be contacted to aid in determining the location of a missing student.

c.  Public Safety will conduct a thorough investigation to determine the location of the missing student.  This may include interviews with known acquaintances, family members, instructors, residence hall staff, and others who may individually or collectively aid in the investigation.

III.  Students residing in on-campus residential facilities may name a confidential missing student contact person or persons at any point throughout the year to be contacted in the event they are reported missing.  This person may be anyone of their choosing.  Students wishing to register a contact person may do so on Public Safety's website.  This process may also be completed by contacting the Director, Clery Compliance and Records Coordinator.  Information submitted for confidential missing student contact persons is confidential and may only be accessed by law enforcement officers in furtherance of a missing person investigation.

Reference Documents

  1. Higher Education Opportunity Act
  2. Clery Appendix to the Federal Student Aid Handbook

For questions relating to the University policies of Student Development, please contact:

Bill Fischer, Vice President for Student Development