FAMU seeks to be first HBCU with accredited police department

A team of assessors from the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators will arrive on FAMU’s campus on March 25. Team members will be here to examine all aspects of the Florida A&M University Police Department's policy and procedures, management, operation, and support services.

Verification by the team that the FAMU Police Department meets IACLEA’s state-of-the-art standards is part of a voluntary process to gain accreditation – a highly prized recognition of campus public safety professional excellence.

Since its inception on Nov. 6, 1958, the IACLEA has represented campus law enforcement and security issues before law and policymakers, higher education officials, and members of the public for more than 3,700 members at approximately 1,000 colleges and universities in 15 countries, according to its website.

This is the final stage of a 36-month process, which, according to Wendy Dorival, the accreditation manager for FAMU’s Police Department, started two years ago. “This is all Chief Calloway,” said Dorival “This was part of his plan since the beginning.”

FAMU PD Chief Terence Calloway, of Cleveland, was sworn in during February of 2014. "What I bring to the table is stability, accountability, discipline, structure and communication," Calloway said at his swearing in ceremony. "I bring a different kind of leadership style here. I don't have just one leadership style.

“I believe in coming together as a family and doing things collectively as a team. It's not just about me," he added.

This accreditation process is another step to assure the safety for students on campus. “They have standards set where those standards provides the best practices in law enforcement,” said Dorival. “There are over 210 standards that enables us to enhance our protection. So a lot of those standards focuses on safety for students, faculty and staff, how we respond to calls, what is our process for maybe making an arrest and processing information,” she said.

“The assessment generally consists of a tour of facilities, interviews with agency personnel and members of the campus community served, a compliance review of applicable standards, and receipt of public comment.  The assessor will review all standards and verify applicable standards as well as standards not applicable to the department.  Assessors will provide feedback to the department during the review.  The assessors will prepare a written report and submit it to IACLEA,” according to its website.

Dorival is optimistic. “If everything gets passed and we receive our accreditation, we will be honored in June,” she said, “making us the first HBCU in the country to receive accreditation from the IACLEA.”

University members, agency employees, and the public are invited to offer comments by calling (850) 412-5434 on Monday, March 26 between 1 and 3 p.m. Comments will be taken by the assessment team.

Telephone comments must address the department’s ability to comply with IACLEA’s standards. The IACLEA Accreditation Standards Manual is available on the IACLEA website (www.iaclea.org).

Anyone wishing to submit written comments about the Florida A&M University Police Department's ability to comply with the standards for accreditation may send them to IACLEA Accreditation at 1110 Bonifant Street, Suite 220, Silver Spring, Maryland 20910.