Weapons Policy

The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art is committed to maintaining a safe and secure environment for the college community and its guests. In support of this commitment, this policy sets forth rules governing the possession of weapons and simulated weapons in and around premises owned or controlled by Cooper Union and at Cooper Union sponsored events in other locations.

The Cooper Union strictly prohibits the use or possession of any Weapon or Simulated Weapon by any person (i) in and/or around any and all Cooper Union facilities (whether academic, residential, or other) that are owned, leased, or controlled by the Cooper Union, regardless of whether the bearer or possessor is licensed to carry that weapon, and (ii) at any University-sponsored activity or event, unless they have obtained written permission from the Cooper Union President or his/her designee.

This prohibition does not apply to sworn federal, state or local law enforcement officers who are legally authorized to carry firearms in the jurisdiction and are in Cooper Union facilities or events in the course of their official duties and/or at the request of Cooper Union.  Law enforcement officers bringing weapons to Cooper Union premises must carry valid identification that establishes their law enforcement status. Exceptions to this policy must have written permission of the Cooper Union president or his/her designee.  Authorized possession of a firearm on Cooper Union premises must at all times be discreet and out of view of any casual observer.


Weapons: Include instruments used to inflict physical harm, that are intended to inflict harm, or that could reasonably cause fear of infliction of harm, and any item that may be deemed weapons under applicable law, including but not limited to: a pistol, revolver, shotgun, rifle, firearm, stun gun, BB or pellet gun, Taser, electric dart gun, and other instrument that launches a projectile by pressure resulting from combustion of propellant material, including a weapon related to or using air, sound, flare, hunting, or springs; bombs, grenades, mines, explosives, or incendiary devices (which can include “ignition devices” and aerosols); and daggers, stilettos, swords, switchblade knives, gravity knives, and knives having a blade exceeding four inches in length; and including parts, components, spare parts, or ammunition relating to the above. A disarmed weapon is a Weapon unless it is a Simulated Weapon.

Simulated Weapon: Refers to facsimiles of any category of weapon described below that resemble the actual weapon but are not capable of use as a weapon.

All requests to use a simulated weapon in conjunction with a Cooper Union related event (e.g., play, film production, or art exhibition) should be submitted in writing to the Director of Campus Safety and Security for approval. If approved, the Director of Campus Safety and Security will issue written permission for the use of the simulated weapon and specify its restrictions. The restrictions will include the name of the individual who may possess the simulated weapon, the time and manner it may be used, the manner in which it will be transported to and from the location, and the location the simulated weapon is to be stored when not in use.  Under no circumstances may a simulated weapon be stored in any Cooper Union owned, leased, or controlled facilities other than an approved safety storage area. The individual to whom written permission has been granted to possess a simulated weapon must maintain the custody of the simulated weapon at all times and may not transfer custody of the simulated weapon to any other person not specified in the written permission. The individual who has been granted permission to possess a simulated weapon may not do so while under the influence of alcohol or any substance that impairs judgment, and may not engage in any reckless behavior while in possession of the simulated weapon. There is no exception to the prohibition of having a simulated weapon in The Residence Hall at any time or for any purpose. Failure to comply with any and all restrictions will result in permission being revoked and possible disciplinary action. The Director of Campus Safety and Security will not approve requests for the use of any weapon as defined in this policy for any purpose that violates any Federal, State or New York City Law.

To Report Weapons on Campus or a Threat of Violence.

Cooper Union believes that in order to achieve a safe and secure campus a collaborative effort by all members of the campus community is required. All students, faculty, and staff who have knowledge of weapons on campus have an obligation under this policy to report that information immediately to the Director of Campus Safety and Security. Anyone with information regarding the possession or storage of weapons on campus that does not pose an immediate threat should report it to Safety and Security at (212) 353-4119 or (212) 353-4270.  Any individual who believes there is an imminent threat of violence on campus should call the police by dialing 9-911 from any campus phone or 911 from a cell phone. Reports can be made anonymously by emailing security@cooper.edu.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.