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Princeton Telephone & Email Notification System (PTENS)

PTENS is an emergency notification system that allows authorized Princeton officials to send news and instructions simultaneously to individuals through landline phones, cellular phones, text messaging and e-mail. The benefits of the PTENS system are its immediacy and direct access to individual campus members through multiple points of contact.

PTENS complements tools the University already has in place to communicate with the University community during events such as weather-related closings, public health crises, public safety emergencies and other unique emergency situations. In the event of an actual emergency, the University will continue to relay critical information using the most appropriate options from a full range of notification resources: PTENS, Web announcements, e-mail, an automated message line, the Tiger TV emergency alert system, local radio stations, door-to-door notifications and posters.


Entering Contact information

All graduate and undergraduate students must enter emergency contact information through the self-service TigerHub database.

Faculty and staff must enter emergency contact information through the Office of Human Resources self-service website.  

PTENS notifications are directed solely to the University member via the contact information provided. While students, faculty and staff are asked to provide "In Case of Emergency" contacts in the self-service databases for other purposes, this information is not relevant to nor used by the PTENS emergency notification system.

Students, both undergraduate and graduate, and individuals who receive a paycheck from the University are included in the PTENS system.  

Additionally, the following university groups are included in the notification system.

  • Emeritus Faculty who maintain a campus office address
  • Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
  • Casual Hourly Employees
  • Affiliate groups:
    • Departmental Computer Users
    • Sponsored Departmental Guests
    • Princeton University Press
    • U-NOW and U-League

If your contact information is up-to-date and you believe you should have received a message, please send an e-mail to PTENS@princeton.edu.

PTENS User Portal

For visual instructions on PTENS User Portal registration, go to: http://emergency.princeton.edu/PTENS-User-Portal

Members of the University community can now manage how they receive non-emergency messages via the Princeton Telephone and Email Notification System (PTENS).  PTENS is an emergency notification system that allows authorized Princeton officials to send news and instructions simultaneously to individuals through landline phones, cellular phones, text messaging and e-mail.

Through the new web portal, individuals may select which non-emergency messages they would like to receive and the way they want to receive them.  Non-emergency messages include:

  • delayed openings, closings and early dismissals due to weather events
  • forecasts for weather that may impact the campus
  • traffic alerts

Individuals may not opt out of emergency messages, which will continue to be sent through all available PTENS methods of communication. The portal allows individuals to list up to ten phone numbers for voice messages, of which two are also able to receive text messages. 

For non-emergency messages, the portal allows users to control the delivery method.  For example, for delayed openings, closings and early dismissals, you may choose to receive the messages via voice and text on your mobile phone, but not via e-mail or home phone.  For traffic alerts, you may only want notification via e-mail and text message.  Unless you edit the settings, your default settings may send messages to all of your devices.

You may also find information about delayed opening, closings and early dismissals on the University homepage and by calling the SNOW line, 258-SNOW.

You must be a member of the University community to use the PTENS user portal. You will need your University ID number, found on your University ID card, to set your preferences. Please follow the registration instructions found here: https://emergency.princeton.edu/PTENS-User-Registration

If you have questions or difficulty setting your preferences, please email ptens@princeton.edu for assistance.

University affiliates

Employees of the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab, Princeton University Press and select other organizations affiliated with Princeton University are included in PTENS. Those individuals not included in the PTENS program have access to more traditional communications methods used by the University, including Web postings and other aforementioned tools. However, they should primarily rely on the information and guidance provided by their own organizational leaders during an emergency.

Non-Princeton University Community Members

Non-University members are, for the most part, not included in this system. Visitors to the University, including contractors and recreational facility users, may refer to the University website, the telephone hotlines, signs and personal communications for information.  In recreational facilities, Athletics personnel provide facility users with information pertinent to the recreational facilities during an emergency.

Departmental Computer Users (DCU) are included in PTENS.  DCU affiliates must ensure the contact information on file with the host department is complete and up to date.


Cellular Phones and Text Messaging

Cellular telephone entries will receive text messages unless opted out of this feature or the service provider for the cell phone is T-Mobile.

T-Mobile Subscribers: The phone number you list as "Cell Phone" will receive text messages only if you confirm that you would like to receive them. Within days of entering a new phone number in the Cell Phone field in TigerHub or HR Self-Service, you will receive an automated text message from the system requesting your confirmation. The message will be from "23177" and will state: PRINCETON ALERT: You have asked to receive SMS alerts from us. You must reply "Y TIGER" to confirm this request. Please use the reply feature on your phone, type Y TIGER, and press your Send key. You will receive another text message that will confirm that you will receive alerts.

All other service providers: For Verizon, ATT, etc., within days of entering your cell phone number into HR Self-Service or SCORE, you will receive a text message from "23177" with the following text: PRINCETON ALERT: You are now confirmed to receive alerts from us. More info text reply "HELP" or "STOP TIGER" to opt out. If you replied to this message with the text "STOP TIGER", you will have opted out and will not receive text messages.

If you find that you’ve ceased receiving emergency notification, check your contact information in TigerHub or HR Self-Service.

Problems with Receiving Text Messages
Check your contact information in TigerHub or HR Self-Service to ensure that you entered your cell phone number in the correct field. If you may have opted out or if you are a T-Mobile subscriber and did not receive the opt-in message or did not reply to it, please follow these instructions to activate the service:

Cell Phone:

  • Choose the feature that allows you to compose a text message. In the "To" field, enter 23177
  • In the body of the text, type subscribe tiger
  • Press Send to send the message
  • You will receive an opt-in message from 23177 that states: PRINCETON ALERT: You have asked to receive SMS alerts from us. You must reply "Y TIGER" to confirm this request
  • Using the reply feature on your phone, type y tiger, and send the message.
  • You will receive a confirmation message that states: PRINCETON ALERT: You are now confirmed to receive alerts from us. More info text reply "HELP" or "STOP TIGER" to opt out.

BlackBerry or Smart Phone:

  • Add a new address into your address book, with the mobile phone number 23177
  • From your address book, select this entry and choose SMS Text
  • In the body of the text, type subscribe tiger
  • Send the message
  • You will receive an opt-in message that states: PRINCETON ALERT: You have asked to receive SMS alerts from us. You must reply "Y TIGER" to confirm this request
  • Using the reply feature on your phone, type y tiger, and send the message.
  • You will receive a confirmation message from 23177 that states: PRINCETON ALERT: You are now confirmed to receive alerts from us. More info text reply "HELP" or "STOP TIGER" to opt out.

If you continue to have trouble, please send an e-mail to PTENS@princeton.edu.


Suspending Emergency Text Messages
Should you choose to suspend text messaging, such as when traveling abroad, you may suspend and re-subscribe to text messaging at any time. Follow the instructions above to ‘Opt Out’ of text messages and once you are able to use your phone, simply follow the instructions above to resume (‘Opt In’) text messaging.

Charges for PTENS Notifications
There is no charge for calls or text messages from PTENS. However, the phone call and text message is subject to the conditions and rates of your particular calling plan. For example, if your calling plan does not include text messaging, you may incur a charge for a text message received from PTENS, based on the rates of your cellular service provider.

Please note that with the exception of the annual system test, the University will only send text messages for urgent situations.

If you have additional questions about the PTENS System, please see the PTENS Frequently Asked Questions or contact us.

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