The National Association of Campus Safety Administrators has recognized Denison University’s Office of Campus Safety with the Medal of Excellence, and it has designated Daniel Hect, Denison’s director of campus safety, as Director of the Year.
Under the guidance of Hect, a peace officer and director of the Office of Campus Safety since 2015, several innovations have been implemented to increase the efficacy, efficiency and morale of the office.
“Director Hect has brought great, new energy to Campus Safety. He has re-designed the unit by focusing on relationships between the officers and the rest of the campus community,” said Laurel Kennedy, Denison’s vice president of Student Development. “His professionalism is top notch, and he has set a high bar of expectations for the staff as well. I’m thrilled to see Dan and the entire office recognized for these achievements.”
Among the innovations:
- Titles of the officers have changed from Campus Safety Officer to Community Service Officer to indicate stronger collaboration with students and other members of the campus community.
- A strong commitment to community relations has been developed through programs like “adopt a hall” and cookouts with students on their residential quads.
- Officers are encouraged to walk the campus buildings and talk to faculty, staff and students, stimulating better relationships between the community and officers.
- Officers have moved to 4 day/10 hour shifts, which allow better coverage of busy times. The officers’ and dispatchers’ schedules rotate throughout the year, allowing the officers familiarity with the campus at all times.
- Officers and dispatch personnel have increased their professional training related to their duties and are encouraged to seek additional training to improve the overall professionalism of the department.
- Members of staff offer self-defense training to students, staff, and faculty as well as local community members.
- Director Hect has built more robust relationships with the Village of Granville Police Department, the Granville Township Fire Department and Licking County Emergency Management/Homeland Security Office.
- The office has updated mutual aid agreements with the Village of Granville, the Licking County Prosecutors Office, and the local school district.
- The college’s emergency operations plan has been extensively updated, and an emergency management guide has been placed in every classroom and academic/administrative office on campus.
- New uniform color and designs convey professionalism and approachability.
- Building volunteers have been trained and equipped with “go-bags” for emergencies.
- Quarterly community service awards have been implemented to recognize departmental achievements as well as members of the Denison community.
- Director Hect hosts a radio show on campus every Friday during the academic year and interviews students, staff and faculty, helping to bring to light many good works on campus.