Geneseo University Police officers want to be more to students than just intimidating, unapproachable officers who are out to get people in trouble. They want students to see them for what they really are-friendly, hardworking men who devote themselves to keeping students safe. The officers want students to feel comfortable approaching them, even if it is just for a chat! So now, you can learn about the few of the ways the officers are hoping to reach out to students.
Adopt a cop? Sounds a little strange, right? Well don’t worry, you aren’t actually adopting a cop. This program simply means each resident hall is assigned a police officer. The officers are there to talk with students at meetings and host special events. But don’t worry, the officers aren’t there to spy on students. Each hall is assigned a specific officer so that students can get to know that officer and feel more comfortable with him. The officers feel that this is a great way for the students to get to know the officers on a better basis, and for the officers to get to know the students.
The officers can collaborate with the RAs in the residence hall they are assigned to in order to set up events that students will find enjoyable and that will also get an important message across. A popular program among the officers (especially for freshman dorms like Daga) is called “Drunk Mario Cart”. This program involves students trying on drunk goggles and learning about the effects and consequences of drunk driving. A recently new program has been initiated called, “Coffee with a Cop”. This is the most informal program, but the best way for students to get to know their officers. This program provides students with an opportunity to just chat with the officers about whatever they would like, while at the same time sipping on coffee and eating treats! Sounds pretty relaxing, right? Well, that’s the idea. The officers want students to see them as resources, not threats. And finally, the most popular event among students is when officers bring in a police dog.
Kristina Tricomi, ARD of Daga, has shared that the officers are always really excited to do these programs. They love getting to know students and giving them helpful information in a fun way!
Another way the officers are trying to get to know the students better? Through bicycle patrols! The officers believe that driving
around in a patrol car creates a barrier between the officers and the rest of the campus community. By riding around on bicycles, the officers have removed that barrier. It also is a great way for the officers to travel through the sidewalks and pathways of campus. So on a nice fall or spring day, expect to see an officer riding by, and give them a wave!
So when you see an officer around campus, don’t be afraid to go up to him and say hello! The officers want students to know that they are there to make sure they are safe, not out to get them.