Parkland College Police 2400 W Bradley Av Champaign IL 61821 217-351-2369 http://www.parkland.edu/police

 

Parkland College’s police officers today work in the Department of Public Safety. Prior to this, security on campus was administered by what was called the Department of Health, Safety, and Security. Throughout Parkland’s history, there have been many individuals working in many different capacities serving this mission of security on campus. They have been known variously as “Public Safety Officers,” “Security Patrol,” “Patrol Officers,” etc. These professionals have included both sworn officers and nonsworn officers.

In 1993, the News-Gazette reported that Parkland College hired nine ‘security officers’ to complement the five “health, safety, and security officers” serving the community. Prior to this hiring, Parkland had contracted with Hurst Security Services (beginning in 1991) to provide night and weekend security. From 1975 to 1993, Douglas Davis, director of the Department of Health, Safety, and Security, was the only sworn officer on campus.

A 1994 article suggests that this new security service caused some controversy in the Parkland community. Some department heads felt that an armed security force was inconsistent with the philosophy of the college and that security officers were prone to overreaction. New hires in 1993 brought the number of (nonsworn, unarmed) patrol officers to eight, with two sworn police officers also added to the department in 1992.  (Howie, 1994)

Also on 1994, Davis retired as head of the department, a position he had held since 1975. At the same meeting that approved Davis’ retirement, the board unanimously voted its support of the department in response to the recent criticisms. (Howie, 1994)

Von Young, formerly of the Champaign Police Department, became chief of Parkland Police in 2002. He is Parkland’s third police chief and the first African American police chief. He was also the first African American police officer in the City of Lincoln and the first African American lieutenant in Champaign.

Sergeant Yvonne Meyer started with Parkland College Police in 2003. Before that she worked with the Champaign Police Department as a Police Services Representative, working with various computer programs including dispatch software.

A 2008 News-Gazette article reported a bomb threat that led to the evacuation of the campus. The threat did not materialize, but the incident resulted in more attention being directed to the security protocols at Parkland College. The digital divide on campus complicated any emergency notification system. While many younger students were most easily reachable via the Internet or text messaging, Public Safety needed other options to reach less-connected students. The system in place displayed messages on all network computers and on-campus closed-circuit televisions, but the police chief hoped to develop notification that would reach students before they arrived on campus. At the time of this article, Parkland was considering various vendors for an emergency notification system that would allow for multiple means of communication, including e-mail, text messaging, and voice messaging, all in a variety of languages. In the college’s newspaper, college relations officer Kopmann informed students of the availability of IRIS, the selected emergency notification system. (Kopmann, 2011 and Bauer, 2008)

This CU wiki entry began as a UIUC research project.  For more on that see Study of UC2B Anchor Institutions' Technology Use

Resources

 

Bauer, Steve. 2003. Respect for all serves new Parkland police chief well. The News-Gazette, June 29.

Bauer, Steve. 2008. Parkland police sergeant likes challenge in her own 'small town'. The News-Gazette, January 20.

Bauer, Steve. 2008. School officials review campus security options. The News Gazette. February 29.

Howie, Michael. 1994. Disarm cops, college urged. The News-Gazette, July 17.

Howie, Michael. 1994. Security chief retiring with board’s support. The News-Gazette, July 21.

 

Kopmann, Matthew. 2011. “Public Safety: IRIS”. Accessed October 19, 2011. http://www.prospectusnews.com/public-safety-iris-1.2577857