SIU students voice opinions on thoughts of new police academy

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - Students gathered in the office of Southern Illinois University Carbondale's Chancellor Carlo Montemagno on Thursday, April 5 in protest of the proposal to start a police training institute at the school.

According to SIU Public Information Officer, Rae Goldsmith, the formation of the police training institute is to be part of a new college of Justice and Public Safety.

The university has been discussing to create the institute for the past several months.

She said it would focus on the education and training of culturally competent law enforcement officials.

Some students at the school voiced their opinion in a peaceful protest outside the chancellor's office, where they discussed their discontent with the idea of forming a police academy at the school in the midst of recent department cuts and reorganization of the school.

Jahi Parham, a freshman, at the school said he fears for the future of his university if things like the formation of the police training institute and other recent actions coming from Chancellor Montemagno's office.

"If it continues to go on this course there will not be a future of this school," he said, "Students aren't going to want to be a part of something that doesn't benefit them. It's not just that we don't want there to be a cop academy. We don't want them to reconstruct and reorganize this entire academy [SIU] to only benefit them."

This morning, Chancellor Montemagno announced that any action regarding the proposed formation of the police academy is to be tabled until the College of Justice and Public Safety is actually formed.

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