South Texas College provides vast resources for campus safety, encourages situational awareness.
South Texas College (STC) Department of Public Safety employs a vast array of security measures to ensure the safety and security of everyone on campus.
STC utilizes high-tech surveillance, LED lighting, a 24/7 dispatch office, and a RAVE mass notification system that enables the college to communicate during times of emergency through text messages, emails, or phone calls in the event of any impending threat.
The best defense, however, according to law enforcement professionals on campus, is the awareness of students themselves.
“We have over 1,000 high definition surveillance cameras as well as enhanced lighting at all of our properties, but we ask that individuals become actively involved in protecting themselves through situational awareness,” said Paul Varville, Department of Public Safety Chief at STC. “Everyone should always be aware of their surroundings, and if they see any abhorrent behavior, contact the Department of Public Safety to prevent any potential violence.”
The STC Police Department was created in 2012 when the Board of Trustees voted to approve a college police department, and a license was obtained from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement. Police officers were hired beginning in 2013, and the department has since expanded to include 23 police officers and 56 security officers patrolling the college’s five campuses.
Safety is accomplished through the education of the college community on crime prevention methods and techniques.
Reaffirming Chief Varville, some STC students agree that while they do feel safe on campus, it is also up to the students to report anything suspicious on campus.
Parking lot emergency phones are located on all STC campuses, and students can sign up for emergency alerts at https://www.southtexascollege.edu/stcdps/stcrave.html.
“Here at STC, I know I am perfectly safe because they always have security guards patrolling to make sure that everything is alright, making sure there aren’t any discrepancies within the students,” said STC student Eduardo Salinas. “To students, I would like to let them know that it is safe here, but the safety also depends on us. We decide whether we want a safe environment within the school.”
For more information, students and staff are urged to visit the Department of Public Safety website at https://www.southtexascollege.edu/stcdps/. In the event of an emergency, call 9-1-1. For non- emergencies, STC police dispatch at STC can be contacted at 956-872-2589 or 956-872-4444.