New UAlberta peace officers inducted

(Edmonton) The ranks of University of Alberta Protective Services members recently increased by four. On July 6, peace officers Kayla Gardiner, Anthony Kimakowich, Kerri Shier and Joseph Tolvay were inducted as part of a multi-agency class that graduated at Edmonton City Hall.

The new members are eagerly anticipating their first shifts on patrol on campus as a means to put into practice what they have learned—and to serve the campus community.

“The training was stressful, but it’s now a matter of taking our skills that we learned into the classroom and take it out on the streets and interacting with the public in the most positive way possible,” said Shier. “We’ve got the foundation, now it’s building everything else and becoming part of another team.”

The recruits underwent six weeks of intense training with colleagues from the City of Edmonton conducted at the U of A by instructors from the provincial solicitor general’s staff college. Trained in areas such as control techniques, traffic procedures and powers of authority for various bylaws, the graduates will now take on new positions with the responsibility to safeguard the institution and protect students, staff and faculty.

In his address to the graduates, Bill Mowbray, director of University of Alberta Protective Services, reminded them the honour of their appointment also comes with the responsibility of professionalism in their service to the public.

“Every contact leaves a trace. Every time you have contact with a member of the public you leave something behind,” Mowbray said. “It’s an impression of yourself and of everyone else that wears that same uniform and the organization for which you are working. Please take every opportunity to make sure that impression is a good one.”

This class marks a change in the way the community peace officers have been trained. Mowbray says this course was organized by University of Alberta Protective Services and Edmonton Transit in co-operation with the solicitor general’s office to prepare this candidate class to meet the personnel needs of the two agencies. Mowbray says the basic program has now prepared the four of them for the next 26 weeks of active field training on campus.

“They have now four separate blocks of training ahead of them to familiarize themselves with everything from the simplest of investigations through to the most complicated, and with all of our policies and procedures,” he said. “They hold office now. They’ve been appointed by the province to an office and been given powers beyond those afforded to ordinary citizens.

“Those need to be taken seriously and used wisely, judiciously and impartially—and I’m very confident that this group will do all of those things.”