History of Campus Safety _ John Vinson

Contemporary college campuses take security very seriously and they take many steps to ensure the safety of students. You might see modern schools making use of technology to keep everyone safe but campus safety was once handled much differently. Read on to look at the history of campus safety. You’ll be able to see a little bit about how it all began and will then be able to appreciate how far things have come.

The Beginnings of Campus Safety

The original idea for crime prevention was developed by a man named Henry Fielding in 1748. The early forms of crime prevention involved both police officers and the development of a campus crime prevention manual. A professor from the University of Louisville named John C. Klotter would eventually study this early British model and establish the National Crime Prevention Institute (NCPI) in 1971. These ideas for crime prevention on college campuses would be largely adopted by universities and academic institutions worldwide.

Yale University has the distinction of opening the first university security department in the United States. This department was opened in 1894 and the Yale Campus Police Department worked hard to solve problems for the student body. After this, there weren’t many major developments in campus security in America until the 1920s. During the 1920s, schools started hiring retired police officers to help with campus security.

During the 1950s and 1960s, universities struggled to deal with problems on college campuses such as riots and protests. Eventually, schools started to adopt a security model that saw campus security as less of a police force and more as a security team. Some feel that the police approach is better and others find the security approach to be more appropriate. Many schools use both approaches in tandem now but the beginnings of this can be traced back to the problems of the 1950s and 1960s.

Modern Campus Safety

Current campus safety concerns are heightened by threats of terrorism, mass shootings, and more. Schools have to remain diligent in order to keep students and faculty members safe. The responsibilities of campus security officials have always been significant but they are even more pronounced in the modern era. Campus safety will continue to be a big concern moving forward and new technologies will keep being developed that will help security officers to perform their jobs.