Violent Intruder Training

Memo from UA President Mark Hamilton

Local law enforcement personnel will use the Butrovich Building for a simulated, realistic training exercise Nov. 13, starting at about 2 p.m. Police would like the building fully occupied. The exercise is based on a violent intruder. Police from North Pole, Fairbanks, Alaska State Troopers and UAF Police and Fire are all participating, along with our own Emergency Management and Risk Services personnel.

Your participation and cooperation in this exercise are a must. The goals are twofold: to help local law enforcement receive the real-life training they need, and to help our own employees receive the real-life training they need. Please mark your calendars; the event will last about an hour. Rearrange meetings, etc., if necessary. You won’t want to miss this.

A mandatory debrief will follow the exercise at 3:30 p.m. in 109 Butrovich. Employees and first responders will discuss how the exercise went and how they can improve.

The best learning occurs through realistic simulation. Work will be disrupted during the training exercise, but for most people in the building, the disruption will be of short duration. Evacuating the building or other action on your part will be required to simulate a real-life situation. Employees with serious concerns about being present during the exercise should discuss the issue with their direct supervisor.

Ten days before the exercise, at 11 a.m. Nov. 3 in 109 Butrovich, all Fairbanks area statewide employees will be required to attend a violent intruder training session. Arrange your calendars to attend this session, even if you will not be in town, in the building, or participating on Nov. 13. At this training session, UAF Police Chief Sean McGee will tell you what you need to do to protect yourself. The information he provides will be applicable in any violent intruder situation—at the grocery store, a public park or ice hockey arena. The training session will last about an hour. Statewide staff in Anchorage will be able to video-conference in to the Nov. 3 training session.

School districts and university campuses across the nation conduct realistic training exercises to help them prepare for events they hope will never happen. We’ve done a number of “paper” exercises and “table-top drills,” but this will be the first realistic violent intruder exercise we’ve conducted, on any of our campuses. I encourage your full engagement.

The only thing worse than failing to prepare for such an incident would be explaining to the public, in the aftermath of one, why we didn’t.

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