Tyler Junior College Survey Reveals Campus Security Results
Back in 2010, Tyler Junior College, which offers two-year academic programs in Texas, ran a survey among their students.
One of the questions asked was about how safe students felt inside the campus. The answers were less than enthusiastic. Less than half said they felt safe inside the college.
Fast forward to 2016, and more than half of the student population now feel safe inside their campus, around 94.9%, which is a huge increase from the depressing responses six years ago.
Guns on Campuses
In 2015, a bill allowing concealed handguns in campuses was up for approval. This was a huge topic for debate, with college students torn whether the bill would have positive or negative results in colleges all over the country.
When interviewed by the Raycom News Network, some of the students expressed fear:
A freshman from Tyler Junior College said, “It’s just that everyone would be paranoid. I don’t think people would feel safe. I don’t know if I would feel safe because, I mean, I could just be walking and someone could pull it out and shoot me.”
The bill was passed, but was amended to clarify that open carry was not allowed in college campuses.
The “Campus Concealed Carry” bill allows licensed handgun owners to carry their concealed handguns. It will be effective in August 2016 for private colleges, and a year later for community and junior colleges.
The TJ College will have enough time to draft their regulations according to the bill, but the school doesn’t seem to have many problems regarding campus security right now. And that is because of the TJC’s overhaul in their safety laws.
TJC Safety and Security in 2016
Tom Johnson, assistant vice president of student services and retired 20-year veteran from the Houston Police Department, said that the 2010 survey result was a “wake up call” for the administration to better its safety and security regulations.
Now, Tyler Junior College has 20 full-time police officers patrolling the school grounds. They are on call 24 hours a day, every day of the week.
Anthony Green, a sophomore, feels safe anywhere in campus, no matter what time.
“Even when it’s dark and you are going back to your dorm, there’s always a police officer in sight…. I feel like TJC has my safety in their hands.”
Years ago, authorities had caught students and non-students dealing in drugs in Tyler Junior College. To further prevent such events, the board of trustees started requiring every student and staff to wear their lanyard/identification card always.
TJC even has “ambassadors”, retired men in their sixties or older, going around campus to keep an extra eye on things.
It’s not a mystery then that the students now feel a great deal safer in their campus.
Jade Marth, a freshman, said in an interview with the Tyler Morning Telegraph: “I feel safe. If I need to call, (police) can escort me at night from one building to the next.”
Aside from the police and ambassadors, the Tyler Junior College also has over 400 surveillance cameras all over campus.
The campus has become better lit, and a smoking ban had been approved in 2010.
Tyler Junior College president Mike Metke is proud to say that despite the crimes in the country, the school was able to keep the students safe.