Humans of the Hilltop: Jocelyn Watkins

Not many employees have the opportunity to call their workplace home for 14 years and still manage to keep a smile on their faces when walking into the office each day.

Jocelyn Watkins, Clery Act Coordinator at Bradley University Police Department, is one of the few.

Watkins began her career at Bradley University as a student before joining the Bradley University Police Department. After graduation, it took Watkins less than a year to land a spot on BUPD’s roster. She described her transition into the workforce as smooth and fitting.

“My existing knowledge of the university certainly helped … and I benefited from having great supervisors and colleagues who mentored and encouraged me,” Watkins said.

Watkins deals with both behind-the-scenes and imperative responsibilities, including directing compliance to the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act.

The Clery Act, which involves crime reporting, timely warning notices, emergency notifications, emergency response testing, fire safety reporting, missing student procedures, notices to prospective students and employees and policy statements, is constantly changing.

According to Watkins, the complexity of her job lies within the evolving nature of the Clery Act.

“Having been amended five times since it was signed into law in 1990 … the fluid nature of the Clery Act offers me continual challenges and learning opportunities,” Watkins said.

One event in particular changed the way Watkins performed her duties entirely.

“Following the shootings at Virginia Tech in 2007, the culture of campus law enforcement changed nationwide,” she said. “Witnessing and sharing in these changes, such as the prioritization of mitigating and responding to threats, has been remarkable.”

However, Watkins said she enjoys that the regulations are constantly progressing.

“I find it meaningful and rewarding knowing that my work is contributing to the safety and security of our campus community,” Watkins said.

According to Brian Joschko, Police Chief for BUPD, Watkin’s efforts are integral to the synergy of the department.

“Her most impressive trait is to see issues looming ahead and work to address them or head them off,” Joschko said. “She is a hard worker who will go above and beyond regularly. She is passionate about our students, so she is usually my go-to person about some of our new initiatives.”

Watkins also said the unique work environment at BUPD is another factor that has kept her satisfied in her job.

“The culture at BUPD is both professional and fun,” Watkins said. “I count my co-workers as my friends. I have no urge to work anywhere else but here.”

Bradley community members can find Jocelyn Watkins, and the rest of BUPD Unit D, working diligently on weekdays, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the BUPD headquarters, located in Campustown.