If you wish to have a member of the MSU Police Department deliver a presentation on Active Shooter Preparedness, please send your request to [email protected]

What is the Active Shooter Preparedness Presentation?

This presentation provides information on how to respond in the event of an active shooter situation on campus and what to expect when law enforcement arrives on scene. Resources include:

Run Hide Fight Video

Active Shooter – Run, Hide, Fight

An active shooter is a person actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area. Although the likelihood of an active shooter event occurring at MSU is extremely low, it is important that members of the MSU community understand how to respond should they find themselves in such a situation. Below is guidance regarding what to do during an active shooter event as well as what to expect when law enforcement arrives on scene.

DISCLAIMER: An individual must use his/her own discretion during an active shooter event as to whether he/she chooses to run to safety or remain in place. However, best practices for surviving an active shooter event are listed below.

REMEMBER: Law Enforcement’s first priority is to confront and disable the threat.

In an Active Shooter Emergency 

Run - 

  • Evacuate whether or not others agree to follow
  • Leave your belongings behind
  • Help others escape
  • Prevent others from entering the area
  • Call 911 when you are safe

Hide -

  • Be out of the shooter's view
  • Provide protection if shots are fired in your direction
  • Do not trap yourself or restrict your options for movement  
  • Lock/block the door with anything that is in the room
  • Silence your cell phone and anything else that might make noise
  • Hide behind large items
  • Dial 911, if possible, to alert police of the shooter's location, leave line open so dispatcher can still listen
  • Remain quiet and calm

Fight -

  • Fight as a last resort
  • Act as aggressively as possible against shooter
  • Throw items and improvise weapons
  • Yell
  • Commit to your actions 

When Law Enforcement Arrives - 

  • When law enforcement reaches you, do not run at them or make sudden movements.
  • Law enforcement’s primary objective is to stop the active shooter as soon as possible.
  • Responding officers will not necessarily know the identity of the shooter and may treat everyone they encounter as a possible suspect.
    • Do not scream, yell, point, or wave your arms.
    • Do not hold anything in your hands that could be mistaken for a weapon (including cell phones).
    • Show the officers your empty hands and follow their instructions.
    • Remain calm and follow the instructions of the responding officers.
    • The first officers to arrive at the scene will not stop to help injured persons.
    • Their task is to proceed immediately to the shooter/threat.
    • Once the threat has been neutralized, safety corridors will be established and the building will be evacuated.

Information to Provide to Law Enforcement or 911 Operators - 

  • Building name and address
  • Location of the active shooter(s)
  • Number of shooters
  • Physical description of shooter(s) (weight, height, race, gender, clothing color and style, etc.)
  • Number and type of weapons held by the shooter(s) (handgun, rifle, shotgun, explosives)
  • Number of potential victims at the location

What do I do if I see suspicious activity or someone violently threatening/injuring someone or a person with a weapon? 


  • Remain calm to avoid provoking disruptive individual(s).
  • Do not physically confront the person and do not block their access to an exit. 
  • Do not let anyone into a locked building/office.
  • Keep away from the area and alert others of the danger.
  • Call 911 or the MSU Police at 406-994-2121 or go to any exterior emergency blue phone and push the red button. 
  • Provide as much information about the person and their direction of travel. 
  • Maintain a safe distance from the suspect until emergency personal arrive. Do not attempt to subdue the individual; avoid direct eye contact. 
  • Follow instructions of emergency personal.
  • If told to seek safe shelter, get inside immediately and lock doors. 

For more information on Violent Acts, Threats and Preparedness -