St. Cloud Student Spotlight: Stephen Westby
Minnesota School of Business Criminal Justice student, Stephen Westby, knows a thing or two about weapons. He is an Afghanistan combat veteran and former military
policeman. But when Westby was chosen as the St. Cloud campus representative
for a Department of Homeland Security training at the MSB-Minneapolis campus,
he was amazed at the depth of information he learned.
The week-long Transportation Security Inspectors (TSI) and Department of Homeland
Security training was open only one day to Globe University/Minnesota School of Business students, and each campus was allowed one “stellar” participant to
attend the certified course: Incident Response to Terrorist Bombings. Westby said he gladly would have attended the entire week if he’d had the security clearance. (He tried.)
A five-year veteran in the Army Reserves with experience in the military police,
Westby assumed that much of the information would be review for him. Instead he
was amazed at the depth of knowledge presented and the different aspects of security in the civilian sector. “Some people felt it was information overload,” Westby admitted.
Westby appreciated the before-during-and after approach to analyzing a bomb threat,
for example. He was impressed that in a disaster, there is an articulated plan
for what to do, how to check for secondary devices, who to contact and what to do next.
Westby also had to admit that the information was disturbing. “It’s pretty easy to get
anything. It’s all on the Internet. It’s scary.”
Another bonus to attending the training was “it opened my eyes to other career paths,”
said Westby. It was an opportunity for networking that he enjoyed, introducing
himself to the instructor and a couple of others.
On campus, besides attending classes, Westby is a tutor in the Resource Center and
member of the Criminal Justice Association. In his personal life, he and his
wife Jessica are expecting their first child in November.