Campus gets active shooter course led by UPD

Director of the University Police Department Harold Todd prepares to lead an on campus active shooter class. 
Nikisun Shrestha/The Lion’s Roar

The University Police Department has been making the campus community aware of active shooters for years through its website. Director of University Police Department Harold Todd has started an initiative to build a presentation on active shooter awareness.   

“The chances of anyone being involved in an active shooter situation are very small,” said Todd. “The probability is most people will never be involved, but because the consequences of an active shooter situation is so horrendous and so life threatening, we want our students and our campus community to be aware. If something ever would happen, they would at least have some knowledge about what to do, where to go and so forth.”

Todd explains the content of what is taught in the class. 

“The active shooter training consists of three basic terms,” said Todd. “How to get out if there’s an active shooter, how to get someplace where the shooter is not. That’s the first thing you’d want to do. We’ll talk about where you should go, what you should look for whenever you’re trying to get out of the building and so forth. Then, we talk about hiding out. We talk about how some rooms are better to hide out than others. We talk about how to secure the doors. The third thing we talk about is take out the shooter.”

Todd shares the reason behind his initiative to make campus community aware of the issue.

“I came to Southeastern about three years ago, and I wanted to create a face-to-face class on active shooter because it’s not only the university,” said Todd. “Active shooters have been in movie theats, in night clubs, and in churches. It can happen anywhere. I started giving the class last year.”

There were certain qualifications and credentials that allowed Todd to start making presentations.

“I went through a two-week FBI instructor training school,” said Todd. “I have a master’s in criminal justice where I gave many presentations as part of my course work. I enjoy getting in front of people.”    

Todd explains how valuable the knowledge can be and takes a short amount of time to learn.

“I’ve been giving some presentations,” said Todd. “There’s information on the police department’s webpage. Hopefully, after the campus community has an opportunity to take some training, they don’t have to think about it very much. If something happens, you kind of thought about what you want to do. You’ve got some tools in your toolbox to try to survive an incident. The training’s not gonna hurt you, it doesn’t take that long, half hour, 45 minutes.”

Organizations, classes or groups interested in the awareness class can contact Todd or visit the University Police Department’s website.