Q&A: Rodel Cruz Naval, Campus Safety

How has work in Campus Safety changed since remote operations began at UW Bothell? Rodel Cruz Naval, campus safety officer, answers a few questions from Director of Communications Maria Lamarca Anderson.

Officer Rodel Cruz Naval on campus in front of the W statue

Q. What would you normally be doing now and where?

A. My job is the same as it was before remote operations. I have to be on campus to ensure it is safe and secure, so my day-to-day is as it usually is. I check the buildings, particularly the exterior doors since they are the vital access points. I check and observe unsecured rooms, look for any damage to our facilities and watch for unusual activity.

Obviously with most people working offsite, there is much less “regular” activity. What I watch for is anything irregular.

Q. What are you working on today?

A. Recently our garages were targeted with graffiti. Today I’m pursuing leads on possible suspects. I’m also following up on reports of transient activity on campus, such as sleeping in the garages and using the grounds as a toilet.

Q. What adjustments have you made to fulfill your work responsibilities?

A. If anything, I am even more meticulous about my work. We are on campus 24/7, so I review reports by officers on the previous shifts and follow up on any activity that’s out of the ordinary. I make sure my reports are thorough for officers on later shifts. I also make sure I read all communications from campus leadership so I know the most recent information, and I encourage my fellow officers to do the same.

I’m especially diligent about checking doors and then checking the interiors to ensure no unauthorized people have entered the buildings. We are gearing up for autumn quarter, and we want to make sure the faculty, staff and students who have to be on campus feel safe and have the best experience possible.

Q. What are you doing to care for yourself or for others?

A. I make sure I stay healthy by eating the right foods and taking vitamins to boost my immune system. I wear the required PPE and maintain good personal hygiene. I instill these same behaviors in my children. I’m a single dad and my daughter (age 14) and my son (age 19) live with me full time. I tell them that we must do our part to keep each other safe — just as we do on campus. Every one of us plays a role in our community’s health.

Having been in the military — I’m a paratrooper and I served with the Philippine Air Force Special Operations — my physical conditioning is second nature. I exercise every day. I believe that health is wealth.

Q. Do you have a change of perspective to share?

A. I find that I’m even more committed to doing all I can to make sure we stay together while we’re apart. I remain evermore diligent to resolve safety concerns.

Not really a change of perspective, more of a reinforcement of what I believe: Maintain a good relationship with your family. Do what you can to resolve issues. We don’t know what will happen next, and with limited access to each other, we don’t want misunderstandings or arguments to fester.

Q. Do you have anything else to share?

A. I’ve learned during this pandemic just how essential Campus Safety officers are to the well-being of our campus. It makes me even more proud to work here. I want to contribute more and am always on the lookout for classes and training that apply to my current job and help me to advance.

When I’m not on campus, I love staying home. I always have projects because I always have goals. I set goals that are reachable, and I love the satisfaction of achievement.

I want my kids to have a good future, so I supported them by joining the military since it gave me a strong foundation and an education. My 21-year-old daughter is in the Air Force, and my son is starting boot camp.

I strive every day to be a better person. No one can bring a good person down. People can try, but good triumphs.

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