It is a key priority of your RIT Staff Council to communicate clearly with and on behalf of our constituents, RIT staff and highlight the important work of our staff and how they contribute to the RIT community. To achieve both of these goals, Staff Council is delighted to bring you this series that will highlight a member of the RIT community in a short, but informative interview. Our second interview with a member of Staff Council features Sr. Public Safety Officer, Jake Griffin, a recent recipient of a Presidential Award for Staff Excellence (with his platoon team) and Block 2 representative.
For the remainder of year we will alternate between highlighting an RIT staff member and a member of Staff Council. If you would like to nominate a staff member that you think we should interview, please let us know by filling out this short nomination form or email us at email@example.com.
(SC): Tell us a little about your RIT career. How long have you worked here and in what roles?
(JG): I’ve been with RIT Public Safety for three years this October, but it feels longer than that (in a good way). I started as Road Patrol Officer II and am now a Sr. Officer within the department. My normal duties consist of taking any type of service, property, or criminal report along with proactively patrolling the campus and ensuring the safety of our community. On top of those duties I head up our Crime Prevention programing, social media, and a portion of our public events. Along with other duties listed I am one of the department’s dispatchers and a member of the Armed Response Team. I can also be found working a wide variety of events such as Hockey or Lacrosse in our University Arenas.
(SC): What do you enjoy most about your role as a Public Safety officer? What do you enjoy most about working at RIT?
(JG): Being a Public Safety Officer allows me to see different people and different problems each day. I like a work environment that is constantly changing and providing new challenges. This model of work brings me closer to the community. I tell everyone all the time that RIT is like no other place to work on earth. The students, staff, and faculty keep me on my toes and every day is a new adventure.
(SC): What do you want members of the RIT community to know about the role of Public Safety at RIT?
(JG): We are here to ensure the community’s safety but that doesn’t mean we aren’t open to discussions or further involvement in the community. We are more than happy to sit down and discuss anything going on within the campus to help better serve the community. Feel free to stop us or approach us, we don’t bite and would be more than happy to sit down with anyone.
(SC): You and members of your platoon were recently recognized as recipients of a Presidential Award for Staff Excellence. The story that was told at the awards ceremony was very touching and we are in awe of your heroics. Can you share with us about what this honor meant to you and the members of your platoon?
(JG): It was a real honor being recipients of the Presidential Award. I know that Matteo Martusciello and Adam Liesegang were both honored as well. Some of the stuff that we work on can get filed away at the end of the day as job responsibilities as we leave work. With certain situations (like this one) where a difference was truly and undeniably made, it is something that stays with you. I want to say it was a feeling of camaraderie, validation, happiness, and several other emotions when we received the award. I know personally my email account was flooded with congratulation remarks and I couldn’t go in any building for the next few days without being stopped and thanked. We truly appreciated the community support.
(SC): Tell us a little about who you are outside of your RIT Experience (family, what do you do for fun, volunteer work, services, etc…)
(JG): Over the last three years I’ve been taking advantage of the RIT education benefits and getting my Masters in Professional Studies through the School of Individualized Study. It has been a bit difficult only because those who know me around campus know I’m always here working in one thing or another. I’ve had some long nights and early mornings but certainly no regrets. I will be rounding the degree out in the spring semester and would certainly do it all over again. As far as personal life I live in the City of Rochester with my wife (Ashley) and our two cats (Dispatch & Jarvis). In our free time we like to get out and explore the city, eat at the restaurants, and walk in the parks. Occasionally I do a 5K for a good cause and when I’m not doing any of that I don’t mind just sitting down and relaxing.
Thanks, Jake, for letting us get to know you better!