By Sarah Baker
In an effort to improve the student experience, Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) has invested in signature events aimed at fostering friendships and shared experiences through the Exceptional Eastern Experience (E3) program. Launched in 2021, this program has brought artists including T-Pain, Waka Flocka Flame, Hunter Hayes, Yung Gravy, and most recently, Lil Jon, to the Campus Beautiful.
As EKU began this new initiative, the members of the Public Safety and Emergency Management team were tasked with building out safety plans that could meet the needs of the venue, the artist and the number of attendees.
“While the university launched this initiative with the intention of crafting a student experience that was unlike any other, our team’s first priority was to ensure that we could host these events in a safe manner,” said Associate Vice President for Facilities Management and Safety Bryan Makinen. “Our public safety team, in collaboration with a diverse group of campus and community stakeholders, has stepped up to that challenge, creating and implementing emergency plans that can be used as a blueprint for hosting safe events whether they are hosted on or off of a college campus.
“Starting in October, our EKU team will be hosting additional classes on crowd safety and event management for free for those in the community who desire to learn how to host a large-scale event in the safest way possible,” said Makinen. “We encourage anyone hosting events with crowds to attend and learn from these national-level experts.”
EKU Workforce Development and Community Engagement has partnered with the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety & Security (NCS4) and Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) to bring training to EKU this fall.
The courses include:
MGT 467: Sport and Special Event Public Information and Emergency Notification (Oct. 17 and 18)
MGT 475: Crowd Management for Sport and Special Events (Oct. 24 and 25)
MGT 404: Enhanced Sports and Special Events Incident Management (Nov. 7 and 8)
MGT 404: Sports and Special Events Incident Management (Nov. 28 and 29)
Anyone interested in attending these training sessions can visit https://cdp.dhs.gov/femasid/ to create a student profile with TEEX and create a FEMA ID. Once login credentials are created, registration for the courses can be found at https://my.teex.org/TeexPortal/?MO=mExtLogin.
To learn more about courses available through EKU’s Office of Workforce Development and Community Engagement, visit workforce.eku.edu.