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Variable Message Board on a portable post welcoming students on college move-in day

College move-in day typically occurs in middle-to-late August. At smaller colleges and universities – that’s a thousand (or so) students all pouring in to move into their new living situation. For larger colleges and universities, tens of thousands of students could move into their new dorms in a 48- to 72-hour period.  

Campus safety managers and residence directors already have effective plans to make college move-in day as easy as possible. Some higher education institutions organize cars to come in and drop off students’ belongings during certain timeframes, and organize the belongings and students in “Unloading Zones” (or a similar name). Variable message boards are valuable tools that help these move-in plans get executed more efficiently. 

With portable, variable message signs that can be remotely programmed through TraffiCloud, move-in day can be easier for campus staff, volunteers, parents, and students. 

What is a variable message sign?

InstAlert Variable Message Sign guiding students for college move-in day

Variable Message Signs are electronic message signs that are used by public and private agencies to guide, inform and remind the general public about updates or changes regarding road traffic, public safety, community and sporting events, and much more. 

What is TraffiCloud?

TraffiCloud remote management software can be accessed on your laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

TraffiCloud is an online traffic device and data management software. It allows users to remotely manage all of their traffic signs with any device that has an online connection, such as a computer, laptop, or smartphone. This gives the user the ability to change sign messages without having to physically visit the location where the sign is deployed, and messages can also be scheduled to change in advance. Users can also create custom reports to display any data collected from their sign. Email or SMS alerts can be set up to notify users if a sign has a low battery or if it is being tampered with. In the case of tampering, the sign will also take images when it is being tampered with.

Variable Message Signs (VMS) with Remote Management Can Complement Processes for College Move-In Day

Directing College Move-in Day Traffic and Providing Up-to-date Information

Some colleges will have multiple volunteers directing cars throughout campus. Rather than having numerous volunteers solely guiding cars, colleges and universities can guide drivers to their corresponding ‘move-in’ location (Freshmen Dorms – South Campus) and inform them of the current move-in timeframe (GROUP B MOVE-IN, 10 AM – 12 PM) using variable message signs. Using TraffiCloud to update these messages throughout the day saves a lot of time, because you don’t have to worry about running back out to signs to update the displays. Messages can be changed from any device with an Internet connection to keep everyone updated, and they can even be scheduled in advance to change automatically at specific times

Along with directing cars through high volume and/or unusual traffic patterns, college wayfinding signage that can be remotely programmed can help guide drivers out to park and reunite with their children. Instead of having multiple volunteers pointing cars where to go after they’ve unloaded all of their belongings, you can have one or two volunteers in tandem with a VMS sign connected to TraffiCloud. Those volunteers who would have helped with directing traffic can now help unload more cars or accomplish other tasks on such a busy day – which means more people can move-in within the timeframes provided.

TraffiCloud interface with custom text for an InstAlert 24 variable message sign

Clearly Label Any Unloading Area

Depending on the location of the college, moving in might be as simple as setting up a few unloading areas around dorms, or having to try and manage moving families in the middle of busy city streets. InstAlert variable message boards are easy to spot in crowded areas and busy streets because they are bright and grab the attention of pedestrians and drivers. Remotely programmable variable message boards on portable posts, are easy to set up in front of unloading areas without getting in the way during move-in day. 

With easily deployable variable message signs, you can set up signs in front of the unloading area and also at entry points around the campus directing cars in the right direction. You can also use this solution to notify students and staff that aren’t involved with moving in about the traffic changes that will be happening.

Other Uses Beyond College Move-In Day

Variable message boards with TraffiCloud can help reduce stress and complement processes on college move-in day, however, they can be used beyond these few hectic days. InstAlert variable message boards with TraffiCloud can also be used to direct car and foot traffic for sporting events, such as football games and tailgates in the fall. Portable VMS boards with TraffiCloud can also be used for other events on campus, such as:

  • College Orientation
  • Family Weekend
  • Blood Drives
  • Student organization events
  • Graduation 
  • And more!

Colleges and universities already have a lot of their move-in day procedures down, and they work well. With remotely programmable and portable variable message signs, campus security managers and residence directors can help keep college move-in day smooth by saving time, maximizing resources, reducing confusion, and keeping traffic flowing. 

If you want to learn more about our InstAlert Variable Message Signs or TraffiCloud, you can visit the product pages or you can contact your local territory manager. 

About All Traffic Solutions

All Traffic Solutions is a leading provider of portable variable message and radar speed signs that are made in the USA. Since the company’s inception in 2000, ATS has helped over 6,000 government agencies, higher education institutions, and private sector organizations manage traffic, share information with the public, and improve overall safety. To learn more, visit www.alltrafficsolutions.com or follow All Traffic Solutions on Facebook or LinkedIn.

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