Accreditation assessment team seeks public comment on University Police

May 12, 2015

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- A team of assessors from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies Inc. (CALEA), will arrive on the University Park campusWednesday, June 10, to examine Penn State University Police and Public Safety’s policies and procedures, management, operations and support services — a required step in a voluntary process to gain accreditation.  “Accreditation of the law enforcement program at Penn State is an important part of our overall continuous improvement effort at the University,” noted David Gray, senior vice president for Finance and Business. 

As part of the assessment, agency personnel and members of the community are invited to offer comments at a public information session at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, June 11, in the HUB-Robeson Center, Room 129C. Comments can also be provided by telephone from 3 to 5 p.m. June 11 at 814-865-0452 or can be sent to the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Inc., 13575 Heathcote Blvd., Suite 320, Gainesville, Va. 20155. 

Telephone and in-person comments are limited to 10 minutes and must address the agency’s ability to comply with CALEA standards. A copy of the standards is available through Penn State's Assistant Chief Bill Moerschbacher ( at the University Police & Public Safety office in Eisenhower Parking Deck.

Verification that the department meets the commission’s standards is part of the accreditation process. Accreditation as a law enforcement agency is a highly prized recognition of public safety professional excellence, according to Penn State Police Chief Tyrone Parham. The department has to comply with 189 standards to gain accredited/recognized status, which is valid for four years, during which the agency must submit annual reports attesting continued compliance. The accreditation provides a blueprint that promotes the efficient use of resources and improves service delivery—regardless of the size, geographic location, or functional responsibilities of the agency. 

The assessment team is composed of public safety practitioners from similar but out-of-state agencies. The assessors will review written materials, interview individuals and visit offices and other locations where compliance can be witnessed. The assessors are CALEA team leader Chief Tom Engells and CALEA assessor Captain Tim Potts. Once the CALEA assessors complete their review of the agency, they report to the full commission, which will decide if Penn State Police and Public Safety will be granted accredited/recognition status. 

For more information regarding CALEA, write to the commission, call 703-352-4225 or email

Last Updated May 14, 2015