BY PETER NEWMAN // DEC. 12, 2015 //
Director of Curry College Public Safety Brian Greeley has been granted the authority to be armed on campus. Among the 20 officers on staff, the chief is the only one who is currently authorized to carry.
Greeley has an extensive background in law enforcement and a long history at Curry College. Prior to Curry, Greeley served 27 years with the Massachusetts State Police as commander of the State Police Barracks in Milton and as an instructor at the State Police Academy. He has worked at Curry College for 11 years.
According to Greeley, officers carrying on campus is becoming more and more common.
“More college campuses have become armed since Virginia Tech in 2007 than ever before,” said Greeley, referencing the infamous university shooting of April 16, 2007, when 32 people were killed and 17 were wounded by a single gunman.
Many Curry students said they felt fine that Greeley would now be armed on campus.
“I think the chief with his past experience would be more than qualified to carry a gun,” said Catherine Payson, a junior nursing major.
Kelsey Tagen, a sophomore nursing major, said, “I can’t see any reason for our chief of Public Safety to not be armed and able to protect himself and the students.”
“He is a professional that has been trained to use a firearm,” said junior criminal justice major Jared Berman. “I think in the event of an emergency, it’s perfectly acceptable for our chief of Public Safety to carry.”
Austin Doherty, a first-year special education major, said he “feels safer” knowing that there is someone on campus armed and ready for an emergency.
Greeley being armed is just the first of many new safety precautions the College is taking this year. There has also been an increase in emails notifying students of safety concerns on campus, such as recent thefts.
When asked about the future, Greeley said that the next step is to increase the number of Public Safety officers carrying guns.
“The next step, if we decide to go in that direction, is having supervisors with the proper training,” said Greeley. “Then after they’re trained, having other officers armed with the proper training.”
Gregory Estes, Class of 2019 President and a first-year criminal justice major, said he doesn’t believe Curry faces the types of dangers that would justify a well-armed Public Safety staff. “Chief Greeley has had more experience in the profession and having every officer carrying is not necessary,” he said.
Matthew Coakley, another first-year criminal justice major and Class of 2019 Student Government representative, disagreed. “If they receive the proper training, I wouldn’t see why not.”