Safeguarding Success: The Role of the RVC Police Department

In the bustling world of academia, safety is paramount. Ensuring the security and well-being of students, faculty, and staff is a top priority for any college or university. However, not all campuses boast a police force equipped to handle the unique challenges of a college environment. Enter the Rock Valley College Police Department, a dedicated team of professionals committed to safeguarding the campus and beyond.

RVC is home to a small yet mighty department of 12 police officers. Despite their modest size, this department packs a powerful punch when it comes to ensuring safety and security. One of their standout features? A lightning-fast response time to incidents on campus. Whether it's a medical emergency, a traffic citation, or a safety concern, these officers are on the scene in record time, ready to act and defuse any situation.

Recently, the Rock Valley College Police Department (RVCPD) received a grant to support department efforts to recruit new and retain existing officers. The $156,000 award from the Illinois Enforcement Training and Standards Board (ILETSB) will specifically fund stipends to help the department compete with other police departments hiring in the area.

What sets this department apart is not just their dedication to duty but also their quality of life. 

“Unlike larger law enforcement agencies, these officers enjoy a better work-life balance, with flexibility and autonomy that allow for more meaningful engagement with the community. For many, this is a second career, bringing diverse experiences and expertise to the table.

Indeed, diversity is their strength. With officers specializing in everything from SWAT tactics to security, this department boasts a formidable array of skills and knowledge. In addition to the officers, the department also includes the college’s Environmental Health and Safety team and an administrative assistant. This diversity enables them to adapt to the ever-evolving challenges of campus safety, staying one step ahead of potential threats.

two white male uniformed police officers stand in front of the bleachers

Officer Marc Rubert and Deputy Chief Michael Schoening work an event on campus

“Our Environment Health and Safety team members can handle any disaster the college might encounter. They write policies and procedures as well as train employees to keep the college safe,” said Chief Yehl. “Julie, our department’s administrative assistant, is the woman behind the curtain who keeps our department organized and functioning.”

But their reach extends far beyond the confines of RVC campuses. Through strategic agreements with local municipalities, they provide vital support to neighboring communities, lending their expertise and resources to emergency calls in the area. This collaborative approach not only strengthens ties with the broader community but also ensures a safer environment for all.

RVCPD is also involved in community outreach that includes blood drives, Marine Corp Toys for Tots drive, and a drug take-back program. The department hosts a drug take-back kiosk where community members can bring expired or unused prescription or over-the-counter medications, including your expired or unused pet medications. 

At the heart of their mission is a deep-seated prid

e in cultivating a safe and welcoming campus environment. With their visible presence on campus, they instill a sense of security that allows students to focus on their studies without fear or distraction.

Their impact goes beyond mere enforcement; it's about prevention. By proactively engaging with the college community, conducting patrols, and implementing safety initiatives, they nip potential issues in the bud, fostering a culture of prevention rather than reaction.

Central to their proactive approach is the RVC's Behavior Intervention Team (BIT), where two officers play a pivotal role.

“The BIT takes a holistic approach to addressing reported concerns about individuals on campus, intervening early to provide support and guidance before situations escalate. It's about fostering a culture of care and support, ensuring that everyone feels valued and heard,” continued Chief Yehl.

In essence, the Community College Police Department is more than just a law enforcement agency; it's a cornerstone of our campus community. Through their unwavering dedication, proactive approach, and commitment to excellence, they ensure that our college remains a safe haven for learning and growth. So, the next time you stroll through campus, take a moment to appreciate the silent guardians who work tirelessly to keep our community safe.

Visit the RVC Police web page for more information.



The Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board (ILETSB) is the state agency mandated to promote and maintain a high level of professional standards for law enforcement and correctional officers. Its purpose is to promote and protect citizen health, safety and welfare by encouraging municipalities, counties, park districts, State-controlled universities, colleges, public community colleges, and other local governmental agencies of this state and participating State agencies in their efforts to upgrade and maintain a high level of training and standards for law enforcement personnel.