The UConn Police Department in partnership Off-Campus Student Services, Residential Life, The Department of Allied Health Services and the Hawley Armory have teamed up to offer self-defense programming for both women and men on campus. Our programs are offered throughout the academic year for students and during the summer and winter intercessions for staff and faculty. These programs are offered for free on campus. Seats are offered on a first-come/first-serve basis and classes fill up quickly! Specialized and private classes are also available for a fee. Email for inquiries.

These programs train both men and women in basic self-defense techniques and offers viable options when confronted with various threats of violence and aggression.

If you have questions or inquiries about our self-defense program, or to schedule a demonstration of the Women’s Self-Defense program, email

Women’s Self Defense Classes: Surviving Violent Encounters

The 12 hour course usually broken down into 3 and 4 hour blocks, educates women about defensive strategies using simple and effective tactics and a unique teaching methodology. This comprehensive course progresses from awareness, prevention, risk reduction, and avoidance to basic self-defense participation. The course includes an illustrated and easily read student manual that outlines the entire physical self-defense program. The student class features guest speakers from our on-campus and local partners.

This course is offered throughout the year and general sessions are announced on our website and through the UConn Daily Digest. We also can work to schedule a special program for your group. Please note that any self-defense class requires practice time and physical exertion. The Police Department cannot offer self-defense classes of fewer hours than listed. If you would like general safety programming, please visit our Education and Crime Prevention Page for more information.

“This is a great service to provide! It was a lot fun, the instructors where great-not only educated you correctly but had fun while doing it!!! Great job!!!”

“I really appreciate the opportunity to participate in this class free of charge and feel more comfortable with UConn PD. It was definitely outside of my comfort zone but I’m glad I did it.”

“I am glad this class was offered. I enjoyed getting to meet UConn police officers.”

“This was an amazing experience. I feel so empowered as a woman and greatly appreciate the skills that I have gained here.”

“I feel much more confident that I could defend myself if attacked. I think all women should take this training.”

“It was a great class for the UConn Community!”

“Excellent course. Can’t wait to practice more!”

Women’s Self-Defense Course

This class is open to staff, faculty, and students at the University of Connecticut.

Free Women’s Self-Defense Course (Summer Session 2024):

Thursday, May 23: 5:15pm – 8:30pm

Thursday, May 30: 5:15pm – 8:30pm

Thursday, June 6: 5:15pm – 8:30pm

Thursday, June 13: 5:15pm – 8:30pm

Each class will be held Shippee Hall Pequot Room, basement level. Participants must be able to attend all 4 classes to be eligible for the program.

Sorry. Enrollment for this class is full. Please check back regularly.

Men’s Self-Defense Classes

The goal of this 12 hour course (4 classes) is to provide realistic self-defense options to men regardless of their physical conditioning. Students at all levels of ability, age, experience, and strength will be provided with techniques and information that can be effectively used from the first day of class.

This class is open to students, staff, and faculty at the University of Connecticut. The class is taught in Shippee Hall’s Pequot Room on the Storrs Campus.

There are no upcoming men’s self-defense classes. Please email for more information.