April 17, 2008, 05:49 PM
Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Mi is considering arming a select few of their security guards (those who are former LEO).
Here’s another thread on it:
One poster even recommends arming security (while plugging his book), but ignores the fact that Security will be just as late as police.
Meanwhile, Cornerstone College (also in Grand Rapids) has decided to conduct “disaster drills”.
April 17, 2008, 06:31 PM
Sorry, should have posted the articles.
Calvin students protest new "Force of Arms" policy
Created: 4/17/2008 2:05:30 PM
Updated: 4/17/2008 2:54:49 PM
Grand Rapids - A new policy at Calvin College is being met with resistance by some students on campus.
Earlier this month, the Christian college in Grand Rapids adopted a "Use of Force" policy which will allow some campus safety supervisors to be armed with guns.
This is the first time in history the school will have armed security guards.
Students will gather on the lawn in the center of the campus at 3:00pm today to protest the policy. The students say they want more input in the decision allowing armed security guards. Calvin College students have created Facebook pages both in support and opposition to the policy.
Campus Safety Director, Bill Corner, says the campus safety supervisors who will be armed with guns will undergo extensive training before carrying weapons around campus. They will also be tested four times a year to test their ability to react to certain situations. It is important to note only supervisors who were certified police officers will be allowed to carry firearms. The new measure should be in place by September of 2008.
Reaction mixed to Calvin College's armed guards
By Dee Morrison
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - A recent decision to allow Calvin College security personnel to carry weapons is receiving a mixed reaction on campus.
Some students, like Kim Wigboldy, said the decision does not fit with their perception of Calvin. "I don't really like it at all. I don't think we've had a lot of issues in Grand Rapids, or especially on this campus."
Another student, Braden Kok, said, "I don't think it'll make the campus any safer, so it doesn't really make a difference."
But others, like Drew Vandwal, remember what happened at Virginia Tech one year ago Wednesday. "I'd be fine with it as long as they're trained and responsible," he said. "When something like that happens, you've got to have people in authority with something to do."
Fellow student Joel Unema agreed. "We trust them as policemen with firearms and they're former police officers working on campus, so I think it's a good, added safety measure to have our campus security able to react to something."
The new policy, a "Use of Force" policy, gives step-by-step details on what's considered necessary and appropriate in responding to different scenarios. The biggest change in the policy is that supervisors who are former law enforcement officers, can carry firearms. They'll get extensive training and testing, and follow state guidelines for permits to carry a concealed weapon.
"It gives us the ability to respond to an active threat to try to address it, and be able to defend ourselves or other lives in case someone wanted to commit a violent act against us," said Calvin College campus safety director Bill Corner. "In that regard, I think it does give us a measure of security above and beyond what we already had."
Other state-funded colleges and universities, such as GVSU or Western Michigan, both have their own full-fledged police departments with the ability to make arrests and write citations.
Private schools, like Aquinas, Cornerstone and Hope, have unarmed campus security guards who cannot make arrests. They rely on local police and sheriff departments to handle serious cases. Spokespeople for those colleges said they have no plans to arm their security staff. Cornerstone's security, however, said policies are always up for review.
The Calvin College measure goes for board approval in May, and if passed, should be in effect by September.
Cornerstone University conducts disaster drill on anniversary of Virginia Tech massacre
GRAND RAPIDS -- Evaluators gave initial high marks to Cornerstone University's disaster drill Wednesday, as the school used the mock campus shooting and chemical spill as a way to improve response to potential disasters.
While it was coincidental the drill was set on the one-year anniversary of the Virginia Tech shootings, Cornerstone Safety Director Richard Honholt said it was part of the university's 10-month revision of its emergency preparedness response system.
Press Photo/Katy BatdorffTaking aim: Student Michael Lynn acts as a rooftop sniper during the Cornerstone University disaster drill.
Cornerstone is among several area colleges and universities that revised response systems after the Virginia shootings.
"Twenty years ago, most Americans would not send their children to school thinking that that could be their last day on Earth," Honholt said. "It's our job to make sure we use every resource we have to ensure our faculty, staff, students and visitors are safe."
During the drill, representatives of the Kent County Sheriff's Department, Grand Rapids Fire Department and the safety directors for Calvin and Aquinas colleges were present to evaluate and learn from the exercise.
"You don't want to be the one calling (a family member) because you didn't prepare well," Calvin Safety Director Bill Corner said.
Earlier this week, Corner announced three of Calvin's safety supervisors will be allowed to carry handguns.
Students participating in Wednesday's drill said the mock incidents brought home what some Virginia Tech students might have gone through last April.
"It's a very scary reality we have to face," said freshman Cory Morgan, 19, who had to play dead during the fake chemical attack.
After the drill, Kent County sheriff's Lt. Jack Stewart said he was happy with the results of the exercise.
"They did well," said Stewart as he looked at his notes. "We have to see the communications, to check how smooth the information flowed."
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