Ready for you at TU: How Public Safety has prepared a safe campus

By Cody Boteler on July 12, 2020

From sanitizing stations to regular patrols, the Office of Public Safety has kept Towson University safe and ready for the Return to TU

sanitizing station
A sanitizing station set up in the Administration Building.

This story is part of a series on how different departments at Towson University have worked over the summer to keep operations running and prepare campus for the Return to TU.

Towson University’s Office of Public Safety (OPS) is prepared for almost any scenario, and that’s proven especially true in its response to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“Everyone has pulled together and done a great job,” says Chief of Police Charles Herring, who is also the director of OPS.

Every division serves a different function in preparing campus for the Return to TU, but they all share the mission of keeping the campus community safe.

As Tigers return to campus, they’ll notice stations in every building with hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. It was Environmental Health & Safety (EHS), a division of OPS, that set those tables up, says Herring.

EHS has worked to secure and distribute personal protective equipment (PPE) for TU as well. Additionally, EHS has been conducting fit tests for those who require specialty N-95 masks.

Access Control, another unit of OPS, has continued to secure campus buildings. This has been especially important, Herring says, as construction work continues on the new science complex.

That unit has also been critical in assisting construction uptown on The StarTUp in Towson’s historic armory and administrative buildings at 401 Washington Avenue.

And, of course, the Towson University Police Department (TUPD) has continued its work as first responders.

Officers have been answering standard calls for service, continuing investigative work when necessary and even delivering food to frontline medical workers in the community.

“We’re service oriented here; we try to provide what we can, when we can,” Herring says.

For TUPD, that has sometimes included delivering PPE around campus.

But while preparing for the Return to TU is a priority for OPS, the staff has continued its regular duties too—tasks like preparing the annual Clery Report and continuing workplace safety trainings.

“Everyone’s usual work has remained,” Herring says. “My hat goes off to everyone here at OPS.”