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ETBU adopts unique approach in campus carry policy

imageFrom East Texas Baptist University, Mike Midkiff, Director of Public Relations

MARSHALL– According to ETBU President Dr. J. Blair Blackburn, East Texas Baptist University has adopted its Campus Carry Policy in response to Senate Bill 11.

ETBU has adopted a unique position among Texas private colleges on Campus Carry in response to the potential threat of an active shooter situation. ETBU will allow certain qualified and approved Texas License to Carry holders among the University’s full-time faculty and staff for their personal protection. Thus, under this policy and practice, East Texas Baptist University has adopted the Opt Out, Authorize In plan.

The ETBU President may grant authorization to a full-time faculty or staff member, who is a holder of license to carry a concealed handgun to conceal carry on the University campus, at a University sponsored event or within or on a University vehicle. This authorization, hereby referred to as Authorize In will be considered by the ETBU President upon application to conceal carry on the University campus.

The authorization process requires the full-time ETBU faculty or staff member applicant to meet the following conditions for consideration:
1.Submittal of official application to the Office of the President;
2.Completion of interview with the University President and/or his designee(s);
3. Completion of psychological evaluation by an approved clinical psychologist or psychiatrist;
4.Continuing obligation to submit to a psychological exam at any time upon request of the ETBU President or his designees.
5. Bi-annual shooter qualification showing firearms proficiency and safety for persons;
6.Annual participation in University sponsored law enforcement active shooter training for personal protection; and
7. Understanding that the ETBU President holds a specific right to withdraw authorization with or without cause at any time and for any reason.

President Blackburn stated, “The Texas Legislature wisely decided to allow private universities to determine independently the best campus carry policies based on each university’s unique and particular circumstances, as well as any needs or desires expressed by an institution’s faculty, staff, and students. As discussions have occurred within those three groups among the ETBU campus community, and within the administration and Board of Trustees at ETBU, we have collectively determined that the Opt Out, Authorize In provides the greatest level of safety and security to our student body and university community.”

“The Campus Carry policy announced today was deliberate and well thought out from my perspective,” said Dr. Dennis Robertson, Chair of the ETBU Faculty Senate. “The Administration did not rush to judgement on this, but through much deliberation over the course of the year, conferring with faculty and staff along the way, they came to a reasonable accommodation.”

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