UB Focuses on Student Safety and Good Citizenship in University Heights Neighborhood

Updated August 31, 2021

UB remains strongly committed to working with students, neighborhood residents and law enforcement to promote good citizenship and improve quality of life in the University Heights neighborhoods.

Working alongside community partners, UB is continually developing new approaches, and assessing current ones, to encourage proper behavior in the neighborhood. We believe the best way to achieve this goal is through a combination of efforts involving the university, Buffalo Police and the community. 

UB’s efforts include educating students on proper behavior and what’s expected of them under UB’s code of conduct, and disciplining those who violate UB's code of conduct or break the law.

Students have also been urged not to attend off-campus events and social gatherings where mask-wearing and physical distancing are not a priority, such as large off-campus parties. Also, students who host large parties are told they may be subject to a $1,500 fine for violating City of Buffalo ordinances.

UB’s efforts include:

Continued emphasis on law enforcement and student discipline

Through ongoing discussions, the university, the Buffalo Police Department and neighborhood residents have agreed that one of the most effective ways to instill proper behavior and good citizenship is to maintain a very visible law enforcement presence in the University Heights neighborhood and at university bus stops during the start of the academic year.

Buffalo Police, aided by University Police, will be especially active during the first weekends of the fall semester, arresting students who break the law and disciplining those who violate university’s code of student conduct. 

Experience has shown that when active law enforcement and disciplinary measures are undertaken during the first month of the fall semester, most students quickly learn that violating UB's code of conduct or breaking the law will not be tolerated and the consequences can be costly.  

Students are told in no uncertain terms that they put their academic careers at risk by breaking the law or violating UB’s code of student conduct.

The disciplinary figures from the 2018 fall semester show UB’s commitment to addressing problem behavior:

  • 94 findings of ‘responsible for disorderly conduct, alcohol, and other violations’.  Note, a student may have multiple findings of responsibility per incident.
  • 45 sanctions of community service, including clean-up in University Heights
  • 56 sanctions of probation
  • 40 other sanctions

Alternative entertainment options for students

At the start of the fall '17 academic year, the university launched new free bus routes to provide students access to alternative entertainment options on the weekends.  The buses run from the UB campus to shopping and entertainment areas on Walden Avenue, including the Galleria Mall.

The university has also developed evening and weekend on-campus programming for students, which includes movies and game nights in the Student Union.

Changes to UB shuttle schedule

Recent changes to UB's shuttle schedule can be found here:  Bus Schedule Changes FAQ

Communication, education and community service

At orientation in July, first-year students participate in mandatory programming about proper student conduct and acceptable behavior on and off campus.  Student behavior is also discussed during parent orientation during a “Safety and Community Standards” session presented by UB’s Office of Student Conduct & Advocacy and University Police.

During the fall semester, the university will continue to raise awareness about proper student behavior by placing ads in the UB student newspaper, engaging students through social media, meeting with student leaders and holding discussions in residence halls.  The university has expanded its good-neighbor programming to include a transfer student orientation and at a “moving off campus fair” to be held during the spring semester.    

Promoting and reinforcing good community citizenship

The University Heights Quality of Life Task Force meets quarterly to discuss collaborative efforts in the neighborhood.  Task force members include representatives from UB Student Government, Community Relations, Student Conduct & Advocacy and Off-Campus Student Services.  The group also includes Amherst, University and Buffalo Police, Amherst Fire Department, Erie County Health Department, State Liquor Authority, Permits & Inspection, and area business and community leaders. 

As part of UB’s annual “Operation Doorhanger,” at the beginning of the fall semester, university volunteers to go door-to-door to about 1,600 homes in University Heights providing neighborhood residents with information about whom to contact to discuss concerns or opportunities related to UB students.  The flyers also will include tips for students on how to be a good neighbor, as well as helpful information about personal safety, food options, housing code compliance and voter registration. 

Off-campus law and safety enforcement 

UB and the City of Buffalo have a memorandum of understanding in place that enables University Police and the Buffalo Police Department to request assistance from one another when required in the University Heights neighborhood.

Long-term stabilization of the neighborhood

Launched in 2015, the UB H.O.M.E. (Home Ownership Made Easy) program provides incentives for UB faculty and staff to buy homes in University Heights and other neighborhoods near the UB South Campus.  Qualified UB employees are eligible for a combination of interest-free deferred and forgivable loans that can be used to help cover down payments and closing costs, or for interest rate reduction.

The program is designed to encourage home ownership and is a long-term approach to help support stabilization and revitalization in and around UB’s South Campus.  




Members of the Community

If you have additional questions, please contact:

Office of Community Relations
124 Parker Hall
University at Buffalo, South Campus
Buffalo, NY 14214-8009