Teaching Students About Samantha Josephson


The story of Samantha Josephson sent shockwaves through the nation as people everywhere were reminded of the importance of personal safety. As educators, one of our roles is to ensure that our students are prepared to face the challenges and potential dangers that they may encounter in their lives. Teaching them about Samantha Josephson’s tragic story and discussing ways to stay safe is an essential part of this mission.


Samantha Josephson was a 21-year-old college student at the University of South Carolina when she went missing after a night out with friends in March 2019. Tragically, her body was found the next day in a rural area miles away from where she was last seen. After an investigation, it was determined that Samantha had mistakenly gotten into a vehicle, thinking it was her Uber ride home, and ultimately fell victim to her kidnapper.

The Importance of Safety Awareness

The case of Samantha Josephson highlights several critical safety practices for students. When discussing this story with your students, be sure to emphasize the following points:

1. Trust your instincts: If something doesn’t feel right or seems off, trust your gut and seek help immediately.

2. Confirm any rideshare driver’s identity: Before entering a rideshare vehicle like Uber or Lyft, always verify that the driver’s name, photo, and license plate match the information provided on the app.

3. Share your plans with others: Let someone know where you’re going, when you’ll be back, and other important details about your whereabouts.

4. Practice situational awareness: Pay attention to your surroundings and avoid distractions like looking down at your phone while walking alone at night.

5. Use available safety features: Most ridesharing apps offer safety features like sharing your trip details and location with designated contacts. Encourage your students to make use of these tools.

Activities to Teach Personal Safety

To further help students understand and adapt to personal safety awareness, consider incorporating the following activities into your lesson plan:

1. Role-playing scenarios: Create situations in which students must practice personal safety strategies, such as confirming a rideshare driver’s identity or seeking help when feeling unsafe.

2. Group discussions: Encourage students to share their own experiences with feeling unsafe and how they handled the situation.

3. Guest speakers: Invite local law enforcement or safety experts to speak about personal safety, the importance of being aware of one’s surroundings, and what steps to take if ever faced with a dangerous situation.

4. Safety app research: Assign students to research various safety apps available on the market and present their findings on the pros and cons of each app.


Teaching students about Samantha Josephson can be used as a powerful tool for reinforcing the importance of personal safety in their lives. By sharing her story and emphasizing critical safety practices, educators can empower their students with the knowledge and tools necessary to navigate the world more safely and responsibly.

Choose your Reaction!