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Washington State Community College receives over $220,000 for campus safety improvements

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MARIETTA, Ohio (WTAP) – Washington State Community College is receiving a significant grant to improve security and safety for those on campus. The college will be receiving over $220 thousand in funds to improve campus security.

The awarded funds are part of the 2022 Campus Safety Grant Program funded with support from the Ohio legislature in Senate Bill 310 of the 133rd General Assembly. The Ohio School Safety Center reviewed the campus safety grant applications in consultation with the Ohio Department of Higher Education, and funds were approved by the Controlling Board and approved on Monday. The Campus Safety Grant Program awards grants to eligible state institutions of higher education to cover expenses associated with physical security enhancements such as security cameras, door locks, alarms, public address systems, and metal detectors. To be eligible for grant funding, colleges and universities conducted a security and vulnerability assessment to identify areas in need of safety enhancements.

“Part of preparing students for future success is ensuring they feel safe on their campuses,” said Ohio Department of Education Chancellor Randy Gardner. “Through these grants, the DeWine-Husted Administration continues to focus on helping our colleges and universities provide for the safest learning environments possible.”

DeWine announced Monday that a total of $5 million in funding was awarded amongst the 33 colleges and universities in Ohio. “These funds will go directly toward helping our institutions of higher education become more secure,” said Governor DeWine. “The importance of campus safety cannot be overstated, and Ohio is committed to supporting efforts that keep our colleges and universities safe.”

Washington State is one of the 33 public institutions in this program and is getting the fifth-most in funds from this.

The school’s organizational effectiveness vice president, Gary Barber says that the college is thankful for the continued efforts to improve the safety of all of those on campus.

“Safety and security is our primary focus here at the college. And the fact that we’ve been able to be awarded over $500 thousand these last two years to do things to keep not only our students safe but also our staff and our faculty is a tremendous effort from the governor. And also from our chancellor,” says Barber.

Barber says that the funds will be used to improve the camera and communications systems.

As well as for infrastructure and cyber security training.

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