Mac Alert

Emergency Notification System Information

Macalester College faculty, staff and students are invited to register their mobile-phone numbers and email address with the college’s Emergency Notification System – “Mac Alert.”

This system will be used by the Safety and Security Office only in the most extreme cases involving the safety of the college community. The Macalester Emergency Notification System “Mac Alert” is capable of sending text messages to:

  • Mobile phones of all faculty, staff, and students who choose to register their phone
  • Macalester email accounts of all faculty, staff and students who choose to register their email address

This is voluntary and there is no cost to sign up for the new system. Those who do not register a mobile number may choose to receive emergency alerts via email.

Depending on your mobile phone plan, you may be charged for the text message that is sent to you.
To test your mobile phone to see if it will work in the system click here and follow the directions.

Check out this brief YouTube video that walks through the registration process.

To register  your mobile phone number or email address: Note: Have your phone  "on."

  • Click on the “Campus Resources” tab then go to “Mac Alert” channel
  • Click on “Register now” link 
  • Follow the directions to register
  • You must have your mobile phone turned on to complete the registration

To re-register: Your registration lasts for two years. Thirty days prior to the expiration of your registration you will be sent an email from e2campus/Omnilert reminding you to re-register for Mac Alert.

  • Click on the “Campus Resources” tab then go to “Mac Alert” channel
  • Click on “log into your Mac Alert account” link
  • Follow the directions to re-register

Macalester conducts a mobile text and email-message test each semester. We announce the test date in the Daily Piper.

Those signing up their mobile phone number for the “Mac Alert will need to provide both their mobile phone number and the provider of their mobile phone service, such as Verizon or Sprint.

Macalester keeps all mobile phone numbers collected for the MacAlert confidential. Phone numbers will not be released to others outside of Macalester under any circumstances.

Mac Alert Message Delivery

Mac Alert messages are delivered through mobile phone carriers, they are not sent directly from the college to your phone. The college cannot control the speed at which the messages are relayed and some text messages may be dropped due to high traffic load, or if the message is perceived as being spam.

While Mac Alert is a quick and efficient way to broadcast important safety information, it is not flaw-proof. Macalester will always use multiple channels to broadcast emergency information and it is incumbent upon students, faculty and staff to also check those other channels during an emergency.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Mac Alert?

Mac Alert is Macalester’s emergency notification system for mobile phones. In an emergency, those registered for Mac Alert will receive text messages from the college.

Who can sign up for Mac Alert?

The service is available to all faculty, staff and students of the Macalester community.

Is participation in Mac Alert mandatory?

No, but all faculty, staff and students who have mobile phones are encouraged to register. Mac Alert is one of several ways in which Macalester may contact the community in the event of an emergency. Other methods of communication include email, voice mail, website alerts and public-address speakers.

Will I be charged for Mac Alert text messages?

There is no charge for registering. Your mobile-phone provider may, however, charge a fee for delivery of messages based on your current calling plan. Macalester will do one test message a semester. Any other messages do represent a real emergency and by signing up for Mac Alert, you can best ensure you get quick information about safety on campus.

What if my mobile phone cannot receive text messages?

You must have texting capabilities to participate in Mac Alert.

Is there a way to test my phone to see if it will work in the system?

Yes, click on test my phone link and follow the directions. Test My Phone.

Can I register more than one mobile phone?

Yes, You may register up to two mobile phones. Please note during the registration process you do need to enter an activation code that is sent to each phone to complete the registration and activation process.

What if I don’t have a mobile phone?

You do need a mobile phone to participate in Mac Alert. However, Mac Alert is only way in which Macalester contacts the community in the event of an emergency. Other methods of communication include email, voice mail, our website, and public-address speakers.

What if my mobile-phone number changes?

If you change your mobile phone number after you have registered, return to the Mac Alert website and update your mobile-phone information.

What if my mobile-phone provider changes?

If you change your mobile-phone provider after you have registered, return to the Mac Alert website and update your mobile-phone information.

What if my mobile-phone provider is not listed as an option on the registration page?

Certain providers are not compatible to receive text messages from an email account. If your provider is not listed, you are not be able to register for MacAlert.

What will Mac Alert messages tell me?

The alerts will be very brief. They will notify you of an emergency situation affecting the Macalester community and direct you where to get further information.

How do I know the Mac Alert message is not spam?

Mac Alert messages will be sent from Mac Alert and our alert vendor at 79516. Email messages will be sent from Mac Alert and e2campus/omnilert. Mac Alert messages will not contain punctuation, but are nonetheless legitimate. If you have any problems or concerns about Mac Alert contact Terry Gorman at 651-696-6218.

Who is in charge of sending the alerts from Macalester?

Only the college’s Safety and Security Office has the capability to send emergency notification messages to the Macalester community.

Other questions?

Contact Director of Safety and Security Terry Gorman.at gorman@macalester.edu.