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DPS Mission and Goals

Department of Public Safety

The East Tennessee State University Department of Public Safety is a professional law enforcement agency dedicated to the protection of East Tennessee State University and its diverse community. The Department is led by Police Chief Jack Cotrel, as he and his force of twenty officers and six dispatchers serve the campus community

Mission of the Department

To Provide for the overall safety and security of the University community and its properties in order to maintain an environment as favorable to academic excellence as possible. 

Strategy for Fulfilling Our Mission

  • Deliver superior law enforcement services with integrity and pride
  • Respect and safeguard the dignity and rights of all individuals
  • Demonstrate respect toward the people we serve and one another to maintain an environment of trust
  • Develop partnerships with all segments of our community through effective communication and collaboration
  • Carefully select and maintain a well-trained, educated, and professional staff
  • Accept individual responsibility and accountability for our actions

Enforcement Authority

East Tennessee State University Public Safety Officers are Commissioned Police Officers pursuant to TCA 49-7-118, and the Tennessee Board of Regents (TBR) Policy No. 5:01:07:00. Commissioned Public Safety Officers have all of the police powers necessary to enforce all state laws, as well as rules and regulations of the TBR. They are also Tennessee certified firefighters and are first responders to any on-campus fire emergency. Public Safety Officers may exercise their authority on all property or facilities owned, leased, or operated by the TBR and the University, including any public roads or rights of way which are contiguous to or within the perimeter of such facilities or properties.

Working Relationships with Outside Authorities

ETSU Public Safety maintains a strong cooperative relationship with the Veterans Affairs Police Department (VAPD) and other local, state, and federal jurisdictions. Some branch campuses are under the jurisdiction of other local municipalities and a cooperative relationship is maintained in all cases.

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