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Training Wheels

July 25, 2019

Lasell College hosted a COBWEB training for 20 police officers across units in Massachusetts

Lasell College and its police department hosted a COBWEB (Cops on Bikes with Education for Bicyclists) training course from July 16-18. COBWEB, an independent organization, trains officers for bike patrol in their communities.

Lasell College Police Department (LCPD) officer Patrick Colburn spearheaded the effort, having gone through the course himself a decade ago.

"Since that time, I've had countless community interactions while on bike patrol that I likely would not have had if I was in a cruiser," he said.

With Lasell as the host institution, LCPD officers received free training for its three participating officers. They were joined by 17 additional officers from Bentley University, Massachusetts Bay Community College, Lowell National Historic Park, Massachusetts General Hospital, UMass Memorial Medical Center, VA Boston Healthcare, and local police departments in Westford, Burlington, Gardner, Natick, and Reading.

Police officer learns a new skill at Lasell-hosted COBWEB training

Participants mastered a number of riding skills over the three-day training, which culminated in an obstacle course across Lasell's Central Parking Lot, Taylor Field, and Science and Technology Center (STC). Colburn is optimistic about the training's impact on the participating officers, particularly those at Lasell.

"Establishing more officers on bike patrol opens up more avenues to ensure campus safety," he said, noting that areas inaccessible by cruiser - such as walking paths - are easily reached by bike.

He added that bike patrols are a great tool for community policing.

"Bike officers are more approachable than an officer inside of a police cruiser. They are out and about interacting with people while still ready to rapidly respond to emergency situations," he said.

Colburn hopes to make this an annual event and train new officers as they join LCPD. And, he is eager to put his own training to use as the fall semester approaches.

"I'm looking forward to getting back out there on my bike and welcoming students back from summer break."

Police officer learns a new skill at Lasell-hosted COBWEB training