The National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) at The University of Southern Mississippi conducted a Sport Event Risk Management training course on February 1-2 at the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s National Office in Indianapolis. Twenty people attended the two-day course, including those from the NCAA and representatives of various Indianapolis sport venues and organizations.
The Sport Event Risk Management course is designed to build sport and special event risk management capabilities for community-wide collaboration and mitigation. Safety and security teams increase their knowledge of planning, risk assessment, training, and continuous improvement practices through activity-based training modules. The expectation is for participants to return to their respective sport venues and coordinate the development or enhancement of a sport event security management system.
Randy L. Buhr, an NCAA Director of Championships and Alliances and member of the NCS4 Intercollegiate Advisory Committee, contacted NCS4 to schedule the course. When asked why this course was important, Buhr shared, “The course allowed our staff to learn more about the various risks inherent in administering NCAA championships and how those can be mitigated through various measures. It also allowed our staff the ability to both meet and collaborate with others involved in the greater Indianapolis area, who also work on organizing events and ensuring safety and security of those events.”
Buhr also commented on how the training would impact the safety and security of NCAA events, saying, “The training will allow those in attendance to apply what they learned during the course to their championship planning. We will also be able to use the educational materials provided to train other championships and alliances staff members who were unable to attend, so they can be better prepared to enhance the safety and security at their various championships.” He continued, “The ultimate goal would be that this training should enhance the safety and security of NCAA championships.”
Participation in this course is recommended for those charged with ensuring the safety of sporting events, including public safety agencies, risk management personnel, emergency management, event management and operations, athletic departments, host community response agencies, venue owners and operators, and government.
Topics include threat identification, multi-agency collaboration, risk assessment, sport security planning, protective measures, sport event staff training, and continuous improvement.
“This course provides answers to many questions and provides knowledge that we can bring back to our staff,” said Crystal Reimer, NCAA Director of Operations. Reimer also commented on the collaboration between participants at the training, saying, “The event staff across Indianapolis are very close. Having them in attendance has given us an opportunity to work with them on ideas that we can implement for our NCAA events.”
Sport Event Risk Management (AWR-167) is a DHS/FEMA-funded course, provided free of charge for the hosting partner and participants. The NCS4 offers a variety of other DHS/FEMA-funded courses dedicated to spectator sports and special events safety and security in addition to Sport Event Risk Management. Additional courses include:
- Risk Management for After-School Activities and Interscholastic Activities
- Sport and Special Events Incident Management
- Sport Venue Evacuation and Protective Actions
- Enhanced Sport and Special Events Incident Management
- Sport and Special Event Enhanced Risk Management & Assessment
- Sport and Special Event Public Information and Emergency Notification
The courses represent a cooperative effort between The University of Southern Mississippi’s National Center for Spectator Sports Security and Safety (USM/NCS⁴) and the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service’s National Emergency Response and Recovery Training Center (TEEX/NERRTC), a member of The Texas A&M University System.
Established in 2006, the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS⁴) is the nation’s only academic center devoted to the study and practice of sports safety and security. The NCS4 is partially underwritten by grants from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The NCS4 mission focuses on three key pillars – Training and Education, Research, and Outreach. For more information about NCS4, call 601.266.6183 or visit ncs4.usm.edu.