CCPD conducts S.A.F.E. training for students

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CCPD conducts S.A.F.E. training for students

Colleen Roach, Staff writer

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Columbia College campus police department conducted a “Secure, Alert, Fight, Evacuate” training course in Bush Science Center March 23.

S.A.F.E. training is meant to teach students the proper way to deal with a dangerous situation, such as a shooter on campus. Originally, students were taught in high school that in the event of a shooter on campus, they are to turn off the lights and hide in a corner of the room out of sight of the doors or windows. The purpose of S.A.F.E. training is different.

“It’s mainly to change the way we think about a dangerous situation. We have hurricane and tornado drills, where you’re told to get under a desk, but we don’t really have shooter drills,” Kenneth Adams, a patrol officer first class for CCPD, said.

The ultimate goal of S.A.F.E. training is to make sure that everyone survives a shooting on campus. Starting in the fall 2016 semester, all first-year students will be required to attend one S.A.F.E. training session. However, officers strongly suggest that other students attend, as well.

Students receive packets at training sessions that contain information such as procedures one should follow in case of a shooter and statistics about famous school shootings, such as the Virginia Tech shooting. These statistics showed how the outcomes of the shootings could have been different if the students and professors had done something more proactive than hiding under tables.

Participants of the training sessions also do exercises that show the difference in how you feel doing different procedures. Hiding in corners of the room made students feel scared and helpless, while fighting back against the attacker in a later exercise made them feel empowered and like they were making a difference, students said.

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