The groups came together to hear an update on the College’s Annual Campus Safety and Security Report
SALISBURY, N.C. — The Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Board of Trustees were joined by local enforcement and public safety leaders at their September Strategic Conversation.
Attendees included Rowan County Sheriff Kevin L. Auten, Captain for the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office John C. Sifford, Chief of Police for the City of Kannapolis J.W. “Woody” Chavis, Deputy Chief for the City of Concord Police Department Betty Stocks, Chief of Police for the City of Salisbury Jerome “Jerry” Stokes and Captain of Special Operations for the City of Salisbury Police Department Melonie Thompson.
“The Board welcomed the opportunity to meet with these community leaders to discuss our long standing relationship. We appreciated their willingness to join us as it is vital that we communicate and collaborate in order to nurture and grow the College’s ongoing safety and security,” said Carl M. Short, chair of the College’s Board of Trustees.
The strategic conversation primarily centered on discussing the College’s annual safety and security report and the relationship and support extended among public safety, law enforcement and the College, including the many improvements that these areas have focused on over the last few years.
“We are proud that the College has a long history of working with our local law enforcement and public safety professionals. In fact, we provide almost all of the necessary training and education to these individuals as they enter the field and continue their professional certifications,” said Short. “In support of these individuals who are instrumental to the safety and security of our college and region, we remain committed to them, as they are our neighbors, friends and family members.”
In 2010, the College conducted a comprehensive campus safety and security study and recognized the importance of leadership in the area and brought on Tim Bost as the director of public safety & security. Bost, a veteran with more than 30 years of experience in the field of public safety, came with a bevy of ideas for improvements and implementations.
“The College has seriously and strategically advanced our capabilities with respect to safety and security,” said Jonathan Chamberlain, chief officer of facilities services at Rowan-Cabarrus. “Conversations like these help to progress our mission of safeguarding and serving our campus community.”
College leadership ultimately decided to bring the institution’s emergency management in line with local, state and national procedures with the utilization of the National Incident Management System (NIMS). This system has helped align all emergency response partners so that in the event of a crisis, there is a structure and plan in place to work together.
The College also created a campus committee to develop an emergency operations response plan. The plan was recently completed, and includes handbooks for faculty and staff as well as students and visitors. The student and visitor handbook can be found at www.rccc.edu/safetyhandbook.
Earlier this year, the College adopted a plan providing each campus location with an Emergency Operations Administrator (EOA) and a Campus Operations Administrator (COA). COAs serve their campus by providing coordination of non-emergency services. EOAs provide management of campus emergencies until public safety officials arrive, establish incident command over any emergencies, verify a 9-1-1 response, meet and brief arriving public safety agencies, monitor and manage the continuing incident until fully resolved, supervise Building Safety Coordinators and more. Communication between these groups is made easier by the implementation of a campus-wide radio system.
“We have had a long history of collaboration with the College, from training to having a consistent presence of local sheriffs on campus,” said Sheriff Auten. “We look forward to continuing this partnership.”
For more information about Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, please visit www.rccc.edu or call 704-216-RCCC (7222). The College is accepting applications for classes beginning October 17, 2016 and January 9, 2017.