LOGAN, Utah — On July 5, Blair Barfuss officially assumed duties as Utah State University’s chief of police. Barfuss came to USU from Utah Tech University, seeing it as the opportunity of a lifetime.
“I'm really excited to be here at Utah State and to be joining phenomenal men and women that serve and have desires to help our campus community,” Barfuss said. “Utah State has a fantastic reputation not only statewide but nationwide. The opportunity to be able to work for a land-grant institution, let alone one that's top ranked in the country, is one of many reasons that Utah State was an opportunity of a career.”
During his first three weeks as the newly appointed chief of police in USU’s Department of Public Safety, Barfuss has had one goal in mind: listen and meet with everyone he can.
“One of the large pieces of success in my prior experience is benefiting from community engagement,” Barfuss said. “Knowing and understanding what our community wants, how they feel about public safety on campus and what direction we need to go. I’m excited to engage with our Aggie community.”
Barfuss had nothing but praise for the police officers he has met at USU. He feels their experience, training and insights are invaluable and will help guide USU’s public safety department in the right direction. He wants to know what has been working, what can improve and what issues are already present. He also wants to shine a spotlight on the fine work that is being done on campus every day.
“One of my initial goals and desires is to share our successes and what we're doing right while asking for input and suggestions on how to move forward,” Barfuss said. “The exciting thing is Utah State has a strong foundational piece of public safety but there's a great opportunity to not only show our community what we're doing right and how we're doing it, but also to develop and enhance our community engagement. I'm truly excited about getting the community actively involved and following their direction and their guidance as to what's wanted here on campus.”
One way Barfuss hopes to begin this engagement is to get officers to meet with as many groups as possible. He feels that if students, faculty, staff and community members know the officers by name, they will begin to see them as trusted members of campus.
“Our student groups and those on campus know we have a police department, but they don’t know who the officers are individually,” he said. “I would see our officers progressing with communication so that our students, faculty and staff know our officers by name, they know that they're part of the Aggie community, and they're here to provide safety and security and also support and friendship– however possible.
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