BOONE, N.C. — Safe Campus: The National Campus Safety Summit has named the Appalachian State University Police Department (APD) as one of the top 25 university departments in the country. The ranked universities were cited for “increasing the safety and security of their campus community” and “making a difference in student safety.” The APD was ranked No. 18.
Andy Stephenson, Appalachian’s director of public safety and chief of police, thanked the organization for recognizing APD’s efforts to enhance its programs and services. “It’s fantastic when the work of our employees is acknowledged on this level,” he said.
Stephenson extended his appreciation for the “outstanding APD officers” and for the “unprecedented support” the department has received from Appalachian Chancellor Sheri Everts, Vice Chancellor for Business Affairs Paul Forte and the entire university administration.
Appalachian was ranked among universities such as the University of Minnesota, Florida Atlantic University, University of Tennessee, University of Houston, Miami University and University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Safe Campus: The National Campus Safety Summit — the premier conference on university and college safety — is scheduled for late February in Las Vegas. The summit anticipates attendance by more than 100 universities as well as officials representing the FBI, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Education, Department of Justice and State Emergency Management Agencies.
This recognition comes less than a year after another significant honor. In summer 2019, the North Carolina Police Executives Association named APD as the Law Enforcement Agency of the Year, primarily for its Appalachian Police Officer Development Program (APDP) — the second of its kind in the nation and the only such program in North Carolina.
Students who complete the two-year APDP become sworn police officers while simultaneously earning their bachelor’s or master’s degrees. The program is offered free of charge for full-time Appalachian students, regardless of major. Students receive payment for their training hours and part-time work as cadets and police officers with APD.
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About the Appalachian Police Department
Appalachian State University’s official policing agency — the Appalachian Police Department — supports the university’s academic mission by working in partnership with the campus community to prevent crime, solve problems and improve the quality of life on campus. The department’s philosophy is one of proactive community engagement, collaboration and customer service, holding the safety and health of App State’s community members as its top priorities. State-certified police officers, security officers and civilian employees compose the department, and this team of professionals helps to create and maintain an inclusive sense of belonging for all members of the Appalachian Community — students, faculty, staff and visitors. Additionally, through its efforts, the department aims to be a leader in innovative public safety ideas and strategies. Learn more at https://police.appstate.edu.
About the Appalachian Police Officer Development Program
The two-year Appalachian Police Officer Development Program (APDP) at Appalachian State University — the second of its kind in the nation and the only such program in North Carolina — equips students with the knowledge, skills and training to become certified law enforcement officers in North Carolina, while simultaneously earning their undergraduate or graduate degrees. Students become cadets in their first year of the program and have the opportunity to complete the Appalachian State University Police Academy during their second year to become sworn North Carolina police officers. The program is open to all full-time students, regardless of major, and students receive an hourly wage for the part-time work and training they complete with the Appalachian Police Department (APD). Learn more at https://police.appstate.edu/apdp.
About the Appalachian Police Academy
The Appalachian Police Academy, also known as “the academy,” is an annual, 16-week training program held each summer on Appalachian’s campus in which participants in the Appalachian Police Officer Development Program (APDP) have the opportunity to earn their credentials as certified North Carolina police officers. The academy is accredited by the North Carolina Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission to administer Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET) and covers all state-mandated training topics. APDP participants attend the academy full time between the first and second year of the program and are paid for their time in training. After graduating from the academy, they may begin working with the Appalachian Police Department as sworn part-time police officers for the second year of the program while they earn their degrees at Appalachian. Learn more at https://police.appstate.edu/apdp.
About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the Southeast, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Appalachian Experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and to embrace diversity and difference. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian enrolls nearly 21,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.