With each expansion of MD Anderson’s services in the region, UT Police continues to evolve to ensure safety in these ‘remote’ settings.
In addition to the main campus locations of MD Anderson and UTHealth Houston, PSOs are stationed at Houston-area locations owned by MD Anderson throughout greater Houston. They include MD Anderson Cancer Center West Houston, MD Anderson Cancer Center League City, MD Anderson Cancer Center The Woodlands, and MD Anderson Cancer Center in Sugar Land.
UT Police’s focus on our campus communities emphasizes a preventive and caring intervention approach through community-oriented policing strategies. About half of UT Police employees are in Public Safety Officer, or PSO, roles.
Unlike PSOs who work in the Texas Medical Center whose daily assignments can vary, remotely stationed PSOs are assigned to a specific location.
In response to vehicle and catalytic converter thefts, UT Police has added electric vehicles for a more broad and faster way to monitor and patrol the vast parking lots and garages. An electric vehicle stationed at the West Houston location has become an invaluable asset to combatting vehicular crime. Since adding the vehicle there, a noticeable decrease in thefts of motor vehicles or catalytic converters in the parking areas has been noted.
The PSOs alternate between working at the main entrance, foot patrols around the building, and in the electric vehicle patrols in the employee and patient parking lots.
Overseeing the PSOs at these locations is Public Safety Supervisor (PSS) Melba Doyle. Doyle ensures that security concerns are coordinated with UT Police’s main campus.
“A PSO’s job duties include greeting patients and visitors, conducting patrols around both the interior and exterior of our facilities, and checking for any physical security vulnerabilities,” Doyle said. Safety issues frequently reported by PSOs include any damage that might have happened to the facility, and any malfunctioning doors, water leaks, or broken windows.
“These deficiencies are reported to maintenance team to ensure our facilities show and function at their best and do not pose any safety concerns,” Doyle said.
In her role as liaison officer, Doyle also routinely meets with each of the site directors to discuss upcoming projects and events that may impact staffing and security. With maintenance project schedules that can take place at any time, including nights or weekends, Doyle coordinates necessary security during for the projects.
Doyle takes pride in her position overseeing PSOs that serve the Houston-area Locations. "Personal well-being is important to me as their supervisor, so I make sure I meet with each team member throughout the week to discuss schedules, check on their training needs, and their mental health.”
UT Police will soon add more security officers to some Houston-area locations.
If you or someone you know is interested in joining our team of PSOs, visit UT Police’s careers page for further information and to apply.