Training Overview

Training is an important component of our mission, and we take pride in the diversity of our staff and the progressive and comprehensive training all personnel receive. All newly hired officers and supervisors receive 80 to 120 hours of classroom training on University policy and Public Safety procedures followed by another 240 hours of on-the-job campus orientation training among the three Columbia campuses. During the classroom training, stakeholders from various University departments present lectures on equal employment and affirmative action, diversity, multicultural and gender sensitivity, sexual violence and Title IX. In addition, officers and supervisors complete eight hours of mandated New York State security officer training annually.

Department of Public Safety staff, including Managers, Directors, and Senior Directors, receive ongoing professional development training throughout the year and participate in important workshops and seminars on job-related topics. Mock drills that simulate realistic scenarios are conducted in order to assess the Department’s emergency response capabilities. Uniformed supervisors also have the opportunity to participate in a merit incentive program, where monthly e-learning courses on topics such as management, leadership, mentoring, diversity and emergency response are offered. In addition, training is scheduled for monthly Command Staff meetings attended by Public Safety Senior Leadership and Management. Specific members of the Management Team belong to industry organizations and attend conferences to collaborate with peer institutions to stay abreast with industry best practices.

Department of Public Safety Training Program

The Department of Public Safety (DPS) is a licensed New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services Training School. The Department’s training team consists of licensed instructors with certifications in CPR/AED instruction from the American Heart Association, New York Department of Health certified Naloxone instruction, and Department of Homeland Security certified Threat Assessment instruction. Public Safety’s Training Program consists of three areas of focus: New Hire Training, Annual New York State Mandated Eight-Hour In-Service Training and Ongoing Staff Training, which collectively cover the following topics:

  • Access control  
  • Call taking/call dispatch 
  • Customer service and professionalism 
  • Diversity 
  • Emergency response  
  • Empathetic listening 
  • Implicit bias 
  • Interpersonal communication  
  • Microaggressions 
  • Multicultural affairs, gender identity, and sensitivity  
  • Patrol techniques 
  • Racial profiling prohibition 
  • Report writing
  • Clery Act 
  • Sexual violence response 
  • Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action 
  • Ethics 
  • Gender based misconduct/Title IX 
  • HIPPA and FERPA 
  • Protection of Minors 
  • Sexual violence response 
  • University and public safety policies and procedures
  • Active shooter/situational awareness  
  • Arrest and NY Penal Law/use of force policy  
  • Bias motivated incidents  
  • CPR/AED and Stop the Bleed  
  • Crime prevention  
  • Environmental Health & Safety
  • Fire Safety 
  • MRI Lab Safety 
  • Narcan opiate overdose response for supervisors  
  • Non-Violent Crisis Intervention and De-Escalation 
  • Responding to Critical/Criminal Incidents