Protective Services Prepares Student Employees
Justin Sullivan
jsull828@uwsp.edu

Protective Services is the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point’s law enforcement branch that focuses on the safety and protection of students and faculty, as well as the Stevens Point community as a whole.

Along with providing emergency assistance and other services around campus, Protective Services is an important asset for UWSP students pursuing a career in law enforcement-related fields.

Ryan Schwobe, a senior philosophy major, has been working for Protective Services for three semesters as a student services cadet. His responsibilities include working the dispatch, operating Campus Cab and patrolling campus. Schwobe said that working for Protective Services has helped prepare him for a career as a multi-cultural diversity director.

“It was a job at the time, but I wanted to work with people so it allowed me to do that,” Schwobe said. “You get to know a lot of different types of people from the community by having random conversations with people you’ve never met before. I really like that.”

Junior resource management: environmental law enforcement major Mike VanOfferen has been working for Protective Services as a student services officer for one and a half semesters and agreed with Schwobe that the job of a cadet will help him in his eventual job as a natural park ranger.

“I learned a lot from this job. How to contact people and how to take a hold of a situation and keep people calm and nice and organized while we’re still talking to them,” VanOfferen said.

Senior Ethan Purkapile, who has been working for Protective Services for a year and half, said that he believed his job as a cadet would be very important in preparing him for a career working in abnormal psychology and mental health fields.

“I really enjoy getting to learn from the law enforcement agents on staff so I can learn what to do, such as basic ways to go about speaking to people and portraying the department in a positive light,” Purkapile said. “In police work you really do a bunch of everything, all relating to different types of people. Our campus is relatively diverse. It’s good to know people’s living issues.”

Sarah McQueen, who has worked for Protective Services for almost two years, said that her job as a cadet will help her utilize her three degrees in English, communication and international studies. McQueen hopes to use her experience at UWSP and her job as a cadet to prepare for a job as a foreign correspondent journalist working in combat areas.

“I learned how to de-escalate a situation and bring the anxiety down. We have to be extremely flexible in dealing with different situations and be able to think on our feet,” McQueen said.

All four students cited working with the Stevens Point community and interacting with the UWSP students and faculty as the biggest perks of working for Protective Services.