Campus Safety Conference Delivers Jam-Packed Education, Networking Sessions in San Antonio
School and university security, public safety and emergency management pros came eager to learn and network last week at the first in-person Campus Safety Conference since 2019.
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After a two-year hiatus brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Campus Safety Conference (CSC) came back with a roar last week. Held July 21-23 at the Marriott Rivercenter in San Antonio, Texas, nearly 500 school and university protection professionals gathered to network, check out new technologies, products and services, as well as learn about a wide variety of issues and trends that are affecting U.S. schools, K-12 districts and institutions of higher education.
CSC 2021’s pre-conference sessions covered everything from preventing school shootings with behavioral analysis to therapy dogs to identifying kids in crisis to grant funding. It was then followed up by a reception in the sponsor showcase where attendees networked and learned about the latest campus security, emergency management and public safety solutions on the market.
The following day, the Campus Safety Conference kicked off its opening ceremonies with the Honor Guard from Trinity University, as well as the Pledge of Allegiance, led by Trinity University Police Chief Paul Chapa’s daughters.
Campus Safety magazine then honored the 2021 Campus Safety Director of the Year winners, runners up and finalists. The winner of the K-12/school district division was Steven Ellis, coordinator of campus security and safety for the Corona-Norco Unified School District in Norco, California. Ray Gerwitz, executive director and deputy chief security officer for the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, came out on top in the healthcare/hospital division, while Gerald Lewis, who is former associate vice president of public safety and chief of police for the University of Texas at San Antonio, was named the winner of the higher education sector.
Retired FBI Special Agent John Iannarelli then gave a sobering presentation on active shooter preparedness and prevention strategies that impact response.
Iannarelli was followed by a wide range of breakout sessions covering emotional safety, how campuses can return in the fall safely, homelessness on college campuses, student/parent reunification, implicit bias and more.
The final day of the show featured a keynote from SIGMA Threat Management Associates Senior Vice President Dorian Van Horn on threat assessments, domestic violence and suicidal behavior. Her presentation was followed by workshops on after school event security, college campus protests, Clery Act compliance and more.
The conference received rave reviews from attendees. Stephanie Hill, who is chief of the Central State University Police Department appreciated the scope and depth of the event’s content, exhibitors and networking opportunities.
“CSC checks all the boxes for a successful and productive conference by offering training sessions relevant in all areas of safety, providing networking spaces, and dynamic vendor demonstrations,” Hill said. “You won’t find a more efficiently run conference for campus safety professionals than CSC.”
Anchorage School District Security Specialist Lindsay Kubosh liked the networking opportunities, saying the CSC was a “Wonderful opportunity to connect with like minded people who have the chance to ask and answer questions.”
David C. Luttrell, Principal, DAG Architects appreciated the overall quality of the event: “As an architect focused on designing safe schools, this has been one of the best conferences to attend.”
Campus Safety Conference staff members are now in the process of preparing for its show in the fall, when the CSC will co-locate with the EdSpaces show November 3-5 in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. More information will soon be available on the conference at CampusSafetyConference.com.
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