Two Cal Poly Grads Look To Stop Sexual Assaults With Their New Crowd-Alert App

By Kaytlyn Leslie
The Tribune (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) The free app, which will be available to download in March, features a range of personal security features, including a “red alert” that notifies the police of your location, starts recording audio and video on your phone for evidence, sends a notification to your friends and/or family and notifies people nearby who also have the app that you are in trouble, with the hopes that someone could intervene.

The Tribune (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)

While at Cal Poly, students Maxwell Fong and Elan Timmons heard — for the first time — a statistic women know well: One in four will be sexually assaulted during their college career, according to the Association of American Universities.

In the era of #MeToo, this may not seem suprising; stories of assault and harassment not only at the college level, but at most every point in a woman’s life, have flooded social media and news outlets.

But for Fong and Timmons, back in 2016 was the first time they had realized the prevalence and fear of sexual assault among their female peers.

“That seemed too high to us,” Fong said of the one in four statistic. “Pretty quickly we kinda just learned, surprisingly, that every female college student we talked to had felt unsafe walking home alone at night, but we also learned that every guy we talked to just had no idea that this was a problem for half of the people in their lives — including ourselves.”

Now the two, both graduates, are working on an app called Ulzi that they hope will eventually put an end to sexual assaults all together.

From stories to safety
Soon after hearing the cataclysmic statistic, Fong and Timmons founded Current Solutions, an online platform for people to share their stories of assault.

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