The following is a company-submitted press release and does not necessarily represent the views or opinions of College Planning & Management magazine.

University Police Departments at Armstrong and Georgia Southern Consolidate

SAVANNAH, GA – On July 29, the University Police Departments at Armstrong State University and Georgia Southern University consolidated in preparation for the universities’ anticipated consolidation in Jan. 2018. Laura McCullough, Georgia Southern’s chief of police and director of the Office of Public Safety, leads the consolidated University Police Department.

“The early integration of University Police Departments will allow for upgraded equipment and aligned training standards,” notes McCullough. “We will be fully integrated well before the start of the fall 2017 semester.”

In recent months, the police departments have conducted extensive cross-training with front line supervisors and officers, including ride-alongs, to facilitate team-building between officers at both universities.

“The safety of students, faculty and staff on all three campuses is our top priority,” says Georgia Southern President Jaimie Hebert. “Our police officers play a vital role in the overall safety of the new Georgia Southern University. We look forward to a seamless transition as we launch a unified, consolidated University Police Department.”

Tiffany Land, Armstrong’s interim chief of police, will continue to serve in her leadership role as the Interim Deputy Chief of the Georgia Southern Police Department–Armstrong Campus while the leadership staff is finalized.

Armstrong officers currently provide security services to the Armstrong Liberty Center in Hinesville and will continue to do so within the consolidated department. Officers will also continue to conduct cyberforensics work for area law enforcement agencies, working in conjunction with faculty and students in Armstrong’s award-winning cybersecurity programs.

“Our goal is to enhance public safety on the Armstrong and Liberty Campuses during this transition and to continue our commitment to high-quality cyberforensics work that benefits the local law enforcement community and the judicial system,” says Armstrong Interim President Jennifer Frum. “We will continue to emphasize our commitment to public safety and to the community throughout the consolidation process.”

The Armstrong Police Department has been honored multiple times for its Cyber Forensics Division’s innovation, lasting impact on the local community and cooperation with regional and national security agencies. In 2015, Armstrong was named a National Center for Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The elite national designation underscores the university’s growing commitment to cybersecurity education and research.

Georgia Southern is ranked as one of the nation’s Top 100 Safest Colleges in America by the National Council for Home Safety and Security’s Safest Colleges in America 2017 report. Georgia Southern’s Police Department is among a growing number of police departments on college and university campuses that are using video technology during routine and critical calls for service. The department was the first public safety force in Bulloch County to incorporate body cameras and in-car recording systems into the daily work of its officers.

On Jan. 11, the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia voted to consolidate Armstrong State University and Georgia Southern University. The new institution, which is expected to debut in January 2018, will be named Georgia SouthernUniversity and will be led by President Jaimie L. Hebert. The tentative timeline for the first entering class of the new university will be the fall of 2018.

About Armstrong State University
Armstrong State University, part of the University System of Georgia, was founded in 1935. The university offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate academic programs in the College of Liberal Arts, the College of Science and Technology, the College of Education and the College of Health Professions. Armstrong serves approximately 7,100 students at its main campus in Savannah and a regional center in Hinesville. Its diverse student population comes from 43 states, the District of Columbia and 67 countries. For more information, visit armstrong.edu.

About Georiga Southern Unviersity
Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125 degree programs serving 20,673 students. Through eight colleges, the university offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education. For more information, visit GeorgiaSouthern.edu.

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