I applaud your sensibility in being aware of the subversive nature of the nefarious trouble-makers of the Cervidae family, AKA They Who Must Not Be Named.
To protect yourself from these dastardly deer, I recommend the following:
- Deer are excellent swimmers. If you decide after a long arduous day of class that you would like to take a nighttime swim in the local watering hole, please be aware that you will not be able to outswim a deer - so this is probably a terrible idea. They're like sharks, but with fluffier tails.
- Deer are terrific jumpers. Do not try to climb a tree in order to get away from them, as they can jump up to heights of 10,000 feet on a bad day.
- The Chinese water deer have large upper canine teeth. With this in mind, I would recommend not taking an alternate route home, say, through China.
- Deer like to have you think that they eat leaves, grass, fruit, et al. Do not believe this, as their diet mainly consists of man-flesh, the tears of the vanquished, and the occasional stray nursing student.
Ways to combat these fearsome creatures of the dark:
- Watch old Chuck Norris films, in particularly pay attention to his roundhouse kick and fists of fury.
- Buy a pet mountain lion and let him loose in the wooded area to eat all the deer.
- Conjure up a patronus to walk you home from class. Bonus points if you can call up a scary bunny.
- Offer the deer a beer.
- Pack up and move (this should be your last resort).
All seriousness aside, I agree with others here in saying you should be concerned about walking home by yourself in the dark due to humans. I would catch a ride with a classmate if you miss the bus; or if you walk home, bring pepper spray and make sure your phone is always charged. Good luck!