Maggie Santos reminisces on her past as a CC student and looks forward to her return to campus as the new Associate Director of Campus Safety

Where are you from?

My dad retired here so I’ve been here since 1979.

How long have you been a police officer?

Almost 24 years. Before that, I was a teacher. I used to teach Spanish and math after I graduated from [Colorado College]. I taught middle school and high school for five years and then I became a cop after that.

Did you always imagine yourself as a police officer?

Not at all, never even crossed my mind. Not until I was teaching for five or so years and I was like, “you know, I want to do something different,” and my friend just suggested I apply—and I got on. I was on the thought process of five years. Kind of like teaching, except every three to five years on the police force you do something different. So I never really left until now.

What was Campus Safety like when you went to Colorado College?

They were mostly old retired guys. I don’t know if we had too many full time people, because there were always different guys driving around. So you never really got to know them. Which is nice now that we have the same people and you guys actually get to know them by name.

What does your job entail?

Well, it is both campus safety and emergency management, and that is the piece that I am trying to promote: how to prepare for something catastrophic. Buildings burning down, chemical spills, active gunman, and training students, faculty, and staff on what to do when those things happen.

What are you most looking forward to at Colorado College?

I think getting to know everybody, what their roles are, all the new things that are going on, how is it different from when I was here—which, it is very different. Even the population is very different. When I was here I, think there was three to five percent students of color, and now it is almost thirty percent. It’s significantly different in just that way. I think my brother and I were the biggest population by ourselves. We used to have NASU, BSU, and, I think it was called METCHA, the Hispanic group. We were all one group. There were so few of us that there wasn’t any point in having three different groups. So we all just had meetings together.

What do you think will be the biggest challenge?

I think learning everything. Everything that is interesting is also very difficult and I need to learn what everybody’s role is and how does that fill the need for emergency management. Because, if there is a crisis, what can Facilities do for me, what can maybe Transportation do. Everybody has a role and I need to figure out what those roles are.

What events have had the most impact on you in your time in the police force?

Probably sexual assault and crimes against children. That was probably the most difficult job I ever had in terms of the emotional impact on my employees and myself and how to keep everybody still positive and addressing those issues.

What is one of your favorite pastimes when you are not working?

I do sports photography, and I quilt. I try to do the Incline once a week with my friends.

What would you wear to a safety-themed party?

I would probably have to have a helmet because I am so graceless. I am always falling down. When I was on the bike unit I had an accident. My third day on the street, I got hit by a car as I was walking. I was arresting somebody in the street, and two people were drag racing, so I didn’t have time to get out of the street and I got hit.

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