Crime Prevention and Community Safety

, Volume 19, Issue 3–4, pp 168–182 | Cite as

Sexual victimization of college students in public transport environments: a whole journey approach

  • Mangai NatarajanEmail author
  • Margaret Schmuhl
  • Susruta Sudula
  • Marissa Mandala
Original article


Sexual victimization of female students during the commute to college is a common and sometimes serious problem. This small-scale study that gathers victim survey data from a sample of 140 female college students in New York City provides insight into their experiences of sexual victimization during the commute to college. It is informed by a “whole journey” approach that includes walking to and from the bus/subway stops as well as waiting for and riding on the bus or subway. The study findings highlight extensive patterns of victimization during all stages of female students’ subway commute to and from college. It is important for colleges and universities in the cities to learn about and deal with off-campus sexual victimization and work with other stakeholders to enhance the safety of commuting students by developing effective and appropriate measures to reduce the opportunities for sexual victimization.


Harassment Public transport Situational prevention Routine precautions 



This study was funded by the CUNY Diversity Projects Development Fund (2016), sponsored by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Human Resources Management. Thanks are due to the faculty members who willingly gave class time to distribute the survey. Our sincere thanks go to the students for their responses to the survey and for their invaluable answers to the open-ended questions.


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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mangai Natarajan
    • 1
    Email author
  • Margaret Schmuhl
    • 2
  • Susruta Sudula
    • 2
  • Marissa Mandala
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Criminal Justice, Director International Criminal Justice BA Program, John Jay College of Criminal JusticeThe City University of New YorkNew YorkUSA
  2. 2.John Jay College of Criminal JusticeCUNY Graduate CenterNew YorkUSA

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