Thank you, Baylor Police!
In a time of danger — say, a fire breaks out, or a crime is committed — most of us will run away; that’s just human nature. Thankfully, we have first responders — such as Baylor University Police Department (BUPD) officers — who run to the scene, even into harm’s way, to help keep us safe.
We saw that in action last October, when a gunman wanted for murder in a neighborhood south of campus was reportedly seen heading toward campus. As students and staff went on lockdown, Baylor police officers went into action, patrolling the campus and surrounding streets and coordinating with local law enforcement to ensure the safety of students. In short, they ran towards uncertainty and danger so the Baylor family on campus could stay out of harm’s way.
We don’t often stop to think about it, but these men and women play an important part in supporting the Baylor mission — both by proactively protecting Baylor students and by coming to the aid of students when needed. God has a purpose for each and every person on this campus; BUPD officers aim to keep our students safe so that they can fulfill that purpose.
Thankfully, events such as the one in October are the exception and not the norm — but there are no off-days for members of the BUPD. When classes are in session and campus is teeming with nearly 20,000 students, professors, staff members and visitors, Baylor police are on the job. And when things are quieter, like over Christmas break and other holidays, BUPD is still patrolling the streets around campus, keeping an eye on students’ homes and property.
But the men and women protecting campus aren’t just security guards; they are fully trained police officers. BUPD’s 37 officers have a combined 300+ years of law enforcement experience, led by Police Chief Brad Wigtil, who assumed the helm of the department in a newly reorganized Baylor Department of Public Safety in 2014. Under his leadership, BUPD has focused on “community policing,” getting to know students and staff better through involvement with campus organizations and events. The goal, says Wigtil, is relationship, which leads to trust and better partnership. — and that, in the end, can help us all stay safer.
Sic ’em, Baylor Police!