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Museum of Fine Arts Protective Services

The Protective Services Department of the MFA has oversight for safety and security-related issues at the MFA and SMFA. Security Officers who staff the front desk are part of the Protective Services Department. Security, safety, or staffing concerns can be directed to the Student Affairs Office, which works closely with Protective Services and advocates student issues when appropriate.

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When bad weather conditions or other circumstances make it necessary to cancel classes or close the buildings, every effort will be made to post the closing status by 6:15 am (or in the case of a daytime storm – by 3pm). There are several ways to check on closing status:

  • Call the Storm Closing Hotline at 617-369-3900. This number will be updated with the latest storm closing/class cancellation information, including whether the buildings and offices will be open or closed. This will be updated throughout the storm with updates on Day and CE classes and building closure status.
  • Tune in or log on to channels 4 (WBZ), 5 (WCVB) or 7 (WHDH). Information will be listed under Museum  School or School of the Museum of Fine Arts.
  • Check mySMFA:

Please do not call the front desk! The guard will have other pressing responsibilities during the storm. 

Note that if the Museum of Fine Arts is closed, then the School will automatically close. Classes will be cancelled and there will be no access to studios, classrooms, or offices in the Main building or at Mission Hill. 

Tufts Snow Closing Information: 617-627-INFO (4636) 

Tufts Emergency Alert System: The SMFA School System Alert is separate from the similar system offered at Tufts, called Tufts Emergency Alert System. You are encouraged to participate in both services to ensure you are well informed about situations at both campuses. Twice a year, at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters, Tufts sends out an invitation to your Tufts e-mail address to sign up for this Alert System. To ensure that you have a Tufts e-mail account, please contact the SMFA Academic Affairs office. If you would like to receive an invitation to sign up for this alert system outside the scheduled invitation window, contact the UIT Support Center Monday through Friday between 9 am and 5 pm at 617-627-3376 or at  

ProArts Schools:

MassArt: 617.879.7000

Berklee: 617.266.1400

Boston Conservatory: 617. 912.9191

Boston Architectural College

Emerson: 617.824.8500, select option 2.

Important Safety Tips to Protect against Residential Breaking and Entering:

Take a good look at your exterior doors and make sure they are solid and sturdy. Windows and doors should be closed and locked anytime that you are not in your home or anytime at night. Burglars can easily enter a home through open or unlocked windows and doors.Lighting, both inside and outside is one of the best deterrents for burglars. Indoor lighting gives the impression that the home is occupied while outdoor lighting diminishes places to hide. Remember, criminals do not like to be seen!
Burglars have opportunity and time to rob your house while you are away on business or vacation. Make sure your home looks as if someone is living in it at all times. If possible, ask a trusted friend, neighbor or family member to stay in your home while you are away. Otherwise, arrange for them to visit your house each day to pick up the mail, any newspapers, deliveries, and turn on lights.

If you have any questions, information or tips please call the B-2 Community Service Office at 617-343-4278 or visit

The Boston Police Department urges any community members who would like to provide information regarding any incidents anonymously to call the CrimeStoppers Tip Line at 1-800-494-TIPS, or text the word ‘TIP’ to CRIME (27463). The Boston Police Department is interested only in your information, not your identity.

Trace Program:
The Trace Program at which the Boston Police Department uses to gather information about stolen property and enters the stolen property information into the FBI's National Crime Information Center (NCIC) stolen property database as well as the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Criminal History Systems Board (CHSB) stolen property database. This allows stolen property information to be shared by all of law enforcement throughout the Country. In order to truly benefit from the Trace Program, you can register your valuables at This site allows you to set up a free online portfolio to keep track of your belongings including, online receipts, product warranties, recall alerts and user manuals. This also makes it easier to report things stolen for the police.

Please review the Student Handbook and read the Personal Safety and Street Smarts section.
  • Taxi service between 230 The Fenway and the Mission Hill Building is available after dark, free of charge. Please contact the security guard on duty to request a taxi.
  • SMFA Protective Services is available to you after standard office hours. Call 617-369-3213.
  • Always show your ID when you enter School buildings. This will help keep our community safe and secure. Thank you for doing so!
  • Avoid walking on poorly lit streets and in areas which are not well-traveled. Better to take a longer route than an unsafe short one.
  • Walk with someone else if possible- especially at night. Most muggers will be discouraged by company, male or female.
  • Be alert to your surroundings. Avoid walking too close to bushes, alleys, entry ways or other good hiding places. Do not text message, talk on the phone, or wear headphones.
  • Never carry more money than necessary. You invite trouble by carrying or displaying large amounts of cash or other valuables in public. For men, money is most safely carried in the front pocket of pants.
  • Women should consider whether they really need to carry a handbag. If you must, carry it tightly under your arm. . . not dangling from your wrist or wrapped tightly around it. Never leave it unattended on store counters, bus seats. Or in shopping carts.
  • Carry a personal alarm such as a ‘screamer’ or a whistle. Unexpected loud noises can scare off a trouble-maker and summon help.
  • If you are being followed by someone on foot, cross the street, change your direction or vary your pace. If followed by someone in a car, turn around and walk briskly in the other direction. If still followed, seek assistance at the nearest home or business and immediately call the police.
  • Have your keys ready before you enter your car or house. You are more vulnerable when fumbling for keys.
  • If you are actually robbed or assaulted, the most important thing is to keep your wits. You must make a personal judgment as to how best to respond given the situation and your confidence in being able to physically defend yourself. If only your property is threatened, it is usually advisable not to resist- it is not worth the risk.
  • Do not rely on weapons for protection. A metal file, keys, a knife- all can just as easily be used against you.
  • Most importantly, get to know your neighbors and cooperate with them in making your immediate neighborhood safer. You may want to start a Block Watch together.
  • Keep the doors and windows locked in your apartment, home, or vehicle.If you have a buzzer in your building, only buzz people in whom you know and are expecting.
Program these emergency phone numbers into your cell phone.
  • Police (Emergency): 911
  • Boston Police (Non-Emergency): 617-343-4270
  • SMFA Protective Services: 617-369-3213
  • Student Affairs: 617-369-3803


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The City of Boston’s Stolen Bike Alert program makes reporting stolen bikes easier and increases the chances of finding your stolen bike by giving you a larger network of search parties.

When you report a stolen bike, an alert is sent to the police, local bike shops, hospital and school security, and everyone who follows on Twitter or Facebook. All of these people will be on the look-out for your bike and the city will instantaneously notify the police as updates are received on your stolen bike. For more information: