By Machaela Ballard

Eastern’s new RaveAlert system has combined texting, voice calling, email, computer pop-up alerts, Facebook and Twitter into one program.
The new system will allow students to receive immediate notifications and timely warning messages from a tier one aggregator, a national mobile media connection service, to assure timeliness and reliability.
 Michael Kasitz, director of Emergency Management, said in previous years immediate emergency text messages were sent in bursts and could take up to 35 minutes for students to receive.
 “We needed to get these messages out faster, so we had to go with a faster system,” Kasitz said, “Now I get my text even before the siren stops.”
The RaveAlert system is used by other universities, including the University of Kentucky and Western Kentucky University.
“The overwhelming response I got was the people who use Rave said it was extremely easy to use, fast, so that’s why we decided to go with Rave,” Kasitz said.
The RaveAlert system was specifically appealing because it offers unlimited text and voice calling, which has already saved EKU money.
By eliminating the cost per message, the new system is able to test once per month rather than semester, and the amount of contacts that can be added to the system is limitless.
Students can use EKU Direct to add up to three mobile phone numbers for texts and three phone numbers for voice calls.
Parents and other members of the community are welcome to add themselves to the contact list at www.getrave.com/login/eku.