When a new university public safety model implements in a pandemic one practical question stands out: how to swear in new officers and conduct mandatory training remotely?
To solve the problem Oregon State University (Corvallis) Operations Lt. Jon-Michael McDaniel turned to the department of Academic Technology (AT) Director David Goodrum. AT associate directors Don DeMello (Classroom Technology Services) and Marc Cholewczynski (Technical Services). Their solution was close at has as AT was completing the repurposing of 350 classrooms to serve as turnkey remote instruction productions spaces for faculty who choose to teach remotely from campus. By adapting their remote classroom to the unique needs of Public Safety DeMello and Cholewczynski provided an option for a designated, secure, professional, and secure space for critical law enforcement functions.
Dating from 1989 OSU had employed the Oregon State Police as campus safety with that contract ending December 31, 2020. OSU administration and board of trustees choose to use the end of contract to establish the local law enforcement unit. As the new year loomed the challenge was on to quickly ramp up a professional Public Safety unit and cadre. Training and deputization were vital to this effort.
The space and technology had to meet strict legal standards. Swearing in new officers is a legal process by which responsibility and authority is formalized under oath. Training is ongoing and includes accountability to federal and state law. The collaboration system has to be reliable, user friendly, versatile, and support a professional presence.
The room was centered to a remote-synchronous collaboration facility with the installation of a 75″ HD display with external audio amplifier and surface mounted speakers. Front and rear mounted cameras provide multiple views of presenters and attendees with ceiling mounted microphones to capture audio from anywhere in the space and aligned with a digital audio processor configured to make audio usable by video conferencing, capture, or other collaboration systems. Wall mounted HDMI inputs allow for adding digital content sources. All of these components are pre-configured and interfaced into a small form factor computer mounted with the display.
Lt. McDaniel reports that the designated collaboration system is an immediate success; “With the use of the video collaboration room, OSU PD was able to complete required training while still adhering to COVID restrictions. Academic Technology was great in all aspects of installing and training of the video collaboration room.”