Mar 21, 2013
By Briagenn Adams and Kristyn Repke
The Ohio University Police Department has welcomed five new officers to its ranks in recent months. Meet the new faces on the beat around campus.
Mathew Austin joined the OUPD in January 2012, but he has been a part of the OHIO community since 2007: He completed earned degrees in Recreation Studies and Sociology before becoming an Ohio University instructor and researcher.
Although he enjoyed his time in his various positions at the University, Austin had always thought about pursuing a job in law enforcement. He graduated from the Ohio Peace Officer Training Academy in May 2012.
“I’m drawn to the diversity of the job duties, sense of civic responsibility and all the possibilities for interactions and chances to make a difference,” said Austin. He also enjoys learning about the work that goes on behind the scenes to keep Ohio University’s campus running smoothly and safely.
Brittney Cottrill comes to the Ohio University Police Department from Logan, Ohio. She knew she would be a police officer because she wanted a rewarding job that she would not become bored with.
Following her high school graduation in 2007, Cottrill studied forensic chemistry before transferring to the Police Science program at Hocking College. From there, she enrolled in the Athens County Sheriff’s Academy, graduating in 2010.
Cottrill said that her job on the OUPD is the perfect fit for her.
“I feel that I can relate to the students because it wasn’t long ago that I was in their shoes,” she said.
Southeast Ohio native Bryan Gallagher has always had a fascination with law enforcement. He said he has devoted his entire life to becoming a police officer by staying out of trouble and drugs. As a police officer for OUPD, he will be challenged every day, he said—but with his training in mind, he hopes to meet every challenge head on.
“I have a great pride in police officers and hope to bring honor and recognition to the community I serve,” Gallagher said. “In all towns, especially college communities, I feel there is a gap between police officers and the community. I hope to bridge that gap by showing people that police officers are there to work with the citizens.”
Adam Hoffman, another Southeast Ohio native, previously worked for the Columbus Metro Parks and for the City of Logan. He said that he initially became a police officer because he enjoys the excitement of the work and the gratification of public service.
“I applied for OUPD because I wanted to serve full-time in my community and because a college environment seemed like a fun place to work,” Hoffman said. “I enjoy the young and vibrant atmosphere and I look forward to working with the Athens community throughout the rest of my career.”
Jason Meade was an officer for the Logan Police Department for four years before he joined the Ohio University Police Department last year. Meade initially became involved with law enforcement because he did not want to do the same thing in his career day after day.
“In law enforcement every day brings different experiences and different tasks to accomplish,” Meade said.
Meade said that the main difference between his previous job with the Logan Police Department and OUPD is the age group the officers primarily deal with. However, he said Ohio University is a great campus and he is glad that he works here.