Simpson security not just ‘party poopers’

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by Ashley Pitkin

Jeff Davis has been employed by campus security since he was assigned to the job as part of the work-study program his first year at Simpson. Now a senior, Davis realizes how the job has benefitted him.

“[Campus security] has given me a lot of experience,” Davis said. “I’m a criminal justice major and I want to be a police officer when I graduate – working for security has taught me how to deal with people.”

Davis and other employees of Simpson’s security department have a variety of duties.

Davis often works at odd hours of the night on shifts of up to eight hours – the longest shift a work study is allowed to work. The long hours don’t bother Davis, but what does bother him is that other students see him as a “bad guy” out to bust parties and get people in trouble.

“Me and the other members of security are here to make sure policies are followed and people are safe,” Davis said. “People think we’re out to get them but we’re just doing our job.”

The job, according to Davis, can be boring at times, but it can also be hectic.

“At the beginning of the year, freshmen like to test the boundaries but we’re busiest during Homecoming,” Davis said. “You can always tell when professors issue tests, too, or when it’s really cold outside – it gets real quiet.”

Along with Davis, security is run by three full-time employees and 15 students. They work together to ensure the Simpson community is protected from whatever may be a danger, including animals.

“There’s been some weird calls – we’ve been asked to catch a lot of bats,” Davis said. “You still respond but it’s hard to keep a straight face.”

Scott Nance is one of the full-time time security members. He too feels students think of him as an intimidating figure but Nance says he’s not aiming for that reputation.

“I’m not trying to make myself look like a bad guy,” said Nance, who’s been employed by security since February.

Nance explained that he and his coworkers don’t search for situations where they’ll need to take disciplinary action. Usually they respond to calls from resident assistants or from students who need help.

“Ninety-nine percent of the time it’s us walking into something – we’re not out looking for it,” Nance said.

If students do find themselves in an unfavorable situation with security, both Nance and Davis suggest cooperating.

“If we do bust a party we’ll usually ask for one person to act as spokesperson to tell us what’s been happening,” Davis said. “Just talk to us – don’t run and don’t give us attitude because we’ll chase you down or call the police and the punishment will be worse.”

Davis hopes students will realize he’s just a regular work study, not a guy on a mission to ruin people’s fun. His advice to students: have a good time but also a safe time.

“Be smart and make good decisions because bad decisions usually consist of putting others in danger,” Davis said.