Student Association discusses new position for neighborhood resources police officer

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Student Association discusses new position for neighborhood resources police officer

Retrieved from the UWL Student Association Facebook Page.

Retrieved from the UWL Student Association Facebook Page.

Retrieved from the UWL Student Association Facebook Page.

Retrieved from the UWL Student Association Facebook Page.

Luis Acosta Jr., Student Government Reporter

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The University of Wisconsin-La Crosse Student Association (SA) met on Feb. 14 to welcome UWL police Chief Allen Hill and city of La Crosse police Chief Shawn Kudron, university assessment coordinator of institutional research Patrick Barlow, and to resolve weather a spirit day should be held weekly on a Monday or Friday. 

Hill and Kurdon are seeking support to fund a position for a neighborhood resources police officer for the GENA neighborhood, where many UWL students reside. Both aim to establish relationships and meet the needs of the community they are serving. “We want to have a better relationship with students who live here while studying,” said Kudron 

Community engagement coordinator Lisa Klien was also in attendance in support of the neighborhood resource officer program. 

SA President Sita Agterberg asked what this actually means for students as to what they should expect from police officers on campus. “We are an entity that wants to assist your needs. For the student body to know who these officers are by name creates a different relationship between students and officers,” Kudron said, “What we found was that people were more willing to talk with police officers when there’s a well-established relationship that we can grow by adding more and more neighborhoods to this program.”   

According to Kudrow, La Crosse receives roughly 60,000 calls of service per year for police work. “This policing program would be an outreach role, away from the radio,” Kudrow said. He said that this program would also involve police knowledge with businesses and landlords that students are involved with. 

This program is still in a late limbo state, as Kudron and Hill are still seeking a certain amount of money in order to pull this through permanently. “If we don’t earn this grant, UWL police and the City of La Crosse police department would still advocate for a partnership,” said Kudron. 

“We understand that there is a time and place for enforcement,” said Kudron, “We are not looking for violations to enforce, especially with the lay out with NROs, who do enforce plenty of arrests and investigation, as well as quality of life issues which does call for enforcement at times, but what they focus on first is to building relationships. This way we get much further with building relationships.” 

Barlow attended the SA meeting to discuss the research survey he produces in order to gage the satisfaction levels of UWL students. The survey is called the National Survey of Student Engagement and is conducted every three years. 

Barlow said the last survey conducted in 2017 received negative feedback about advising. This made the university install an academic module that has sense helped student advisors learn how to better suit student’s needs. Across country, first year students are found to have very little interaction with faculty. UWL seeks to study the ways in which the first-year seminars may improve this connection point for first year students.  

The SA voted to have “Maroon Mondays” instead be “Festive Fridays” where students will be encouraged to wear their UWL attire. Sen. Sam Paulson regarded the movement, and the discussion on whether it makes sense to have a sprit day on Mondays or Fridays, as a “goofy resolution.” The senators weighed out the possibility of all UWL apparel, including both maroon and gray colors, to be included. The resolution passed and UWL will now celebrate a “Festive Friday” each week.   

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