Episode 17: Marlon Lynch, NYU Senior Vice President, Campus Services and Safety
NYU Senior Vice President, Campus Services and Safety Marlon Lynch visits with Karen and Sabah to detail the story of his career trajectory, offer advice to students, and answer questions relating to public safety practices at NYU.
A decorated public safety professional with 24 years of experience, Marlon C. Lynch has led safety and security efforts at NYU since September 2016, most recently as NYU's Senior Vice President, Campus Services and Safety.
Marlon began his career as a police officer in Michigan and has held leadership positions at the University of Chicago, Vanderbilt University, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and North Carolina A&T State University.
Marlon earned his bachelor's degree from Michigan State University and his masters degree from Boston University. He currently serves as a commissioner for the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) and is a former president of the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators (IACLEA). Marlon was inducted into the Michigan State University School of Criminal Justice Wall of Fame in 2019.
Intro Voices [00:00:05] Where do I go? It only happened once. I think I was singled out. The phone calls began about one month ago. What is hazing? Something happened to me when I was younger. I'm worried about my safety. He said he was sorry. Can someone help me? Where can I get help? Can someone help me?
Intro Voices [00:00:31] This is “You Matter”, a podcast for the NYU community developed by the Department of Public Safety.
Karen Ortman [00:00:37] Hi, everyone, and welcome back to Season Two of You Matter. A podcast created to teach, inspire and motivate members of the NYU community who have been victimized in some form or fashion and to identify resources both on and off campus that can help. I am your co-host, Karen Ortman Assistant Vice President of Field Operations at the Department of Public Safety and a retired law enforcement professional.
Sabah Fatima [00:01:01] And I am Sabah Fatima, a premed graduate student here at NYU College of Global Public Health.
Karen Ortman [00:01:06] Today we introduce Marlon C Lynch, Senior Vice President of Campus Services and Safety at NYU. Thank you, Marlon. Thank you for speaking with us today and for helping us to launch season two of You Matter.
Marlon Lynch [00:01:21] Good morning.
Karen Ortman [00:01:23] So, Marlon, if you would share with our listeners how your personal and educational journey led you to a profession in higher education.
Marlon Lynch [00:01:33] It started as an undergraduate at Michigan State University, my alma mater, where I was a criminal justice major. But, I also worked two years as a resident assistant in the housing system there, as well as I worked as a work study student in the Office of Student Affairs there. And so within that office was, I think at the time it was called judicial affairs, which would be something different today. It's a little softer title as well as student organizations. And so the exposure within the Office of Student Affairs gave me a lot of insight to sort of the day to day in regards to that. So but as a criminal justice major, I actually did an internship with a local municipal police department in the cadet program. So it gave us an opportunity to experience the day to day operations of what it's like to be in law enforcement. So everything from working in records to assisting investigators in various areas and just the overall the day to day operations with that. And so that municipality was adjacent to Michigan State University. So a lot of exposure to what occurred for the Department of Public Safety and its neighboring police department. So that was the beginning.
Karen Ortman [00:02:56] Okay, that makes sense. So when you graduated from Michigan State and I presume you're a huge Michigan State football fan.
Marlon Lynch [00:03:07] Go Green!
Karen Ortman [00:03:09] Where did you go? What was your first job in this profession?
Marlon Lynch [00:03:17] So actually, I began my law enforcement career before graduating. So the cadet program led to an opportunity to work full-time as a police officer. So paying out-of-state tuition - no, I'm originally from Chicago, not the state of Michigan. And so I decided that I would start as a police officer, go to school part-time. So I couldn't, actually. So in law enforcement generally, you have a probationary year. So 12 months. So I went to the academy, began the career and then went back to school, as a part time student, finished up, working full time, working midnight shift, getting off shift, going to class, and that's how I completed my last year with that. So I started out as a municipal police officer locally, but finished my degree working full-time as a police officer.
Sabah Fatima [00:04:15] It must've been a long year.
Marlon Lynch [00:04:19] It was actually a little longer than a year. Because you can't go full time, right. So it sort of extends it out a little bit. But it was great. Great to practical as well as with the sort of theoretical in the classroom.
Karen Ortman [00:04:30] So the department in which you were a cadet and then a municipal officer. How long did you remain with that department?
Marlon Lynch [00:04:39] So was about I did about five years with the municipality there. And then I transitioned from there. Actually, my wife was in law school at that other school in the state of Michigan.
Karen Ortman [00:04:50] The other school?
Marlon Lynch [00:04:50] The other school. The other school was at the University of Michigan or something like that. So when she graduated law school, we actually had an opportunity to relocate. And at that time, I actually was working out on campus at SMU, Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. I ran across a gentleman who just so happened to be near the same times frequently. So we started to work out together. And one day I wore a t shirt from my former police department. He asked me who gave me the t shirt. I said no one gave it to me. It's mine. We're just at the department I worked at. He says, I didn't know you were a cop. I said, Yeah. He says, I'm a captain here, Southern Methodist University Police Department. He says, Where do you work? I said, Actually, I'm trying to determine that. Now, he says, you should come check us out. I said, nah, nah, not really interested in being a campus cop.
Marlon Lynch [00:05:51] Exactly. And he says, well, I think you should, you know, come here. So we just talked and he said, you told them we shared background and things like that. And he shared with me at that time that they were actually going to have some retirement coming up within the department to where it was, I think maybe two, two lieutenants and a sergeant were retiring. And so it would've given me an opportunity with my background and education to possibly get promoted sooner rather than later. And so I went and I met the the chief there. And this great guy, actually still a mentor to this day. And so that was the start of it.
Karen Ortman [00:06:32] So you're first a higher ed position was with Southern Methodist.
[00:06:35] Southern Methodist University. Yes.
Karen Ortman [00:06:37] OK. So how long did you stay there?
Marlon Lynch [00:06:39] I was there for maybe four years. And then I had an opportunity. I'm actually promoted up. When I left, I was a lieutenant at Southern Methodist University. I was recruited to North Carolina. And my first role as assistant chief. Yeah. So it was and that was one thing. And being in higher ed, I always knew that I wanted to lead my own police department. And the opportunities to do that were going to be a lot sooner in higher ed as opposed to traditional, especially a large municipal agency. Sometimes you have to be seven years on before you even eligible to test for sergeant. At that point. And so it can be a long, long process.
Karen Ortman [00:07:23] A long process, if ever.
Marlon Lynch [00:07:24] If ever. That's correct.
Karen Ortman [00:07:25] Heading on the right side of the department.
Marlon Lynch [00:07:27] And the other part of that is that I enjoyed being on campus, you know. So it was a good fit.
Karen Ortman [00:07:33] Yeah. So you were at North Carolina?
Marlon Lynch [00:07:37] Yes.
Karen Ortman [00:07:38] And how long were you there?
Marlon Lynch [00:07:41] So I was in North Carolina. I was an assistant chief there. And then I had an opportunity to become chief of police at North Carolina Anti State University as so historically black university in Greensboro, North Carolina. I was 32 at that time.
Karen Ortman [00:07:59] Wow. And a chief.
Marlon Lynch [00:08:00] Yeah, I was my first one.
Karen Ortman [00:08:02] Not bad.
Marlon Lynch [00:08:03] Yeah, I'll take it. It was a learning experience. I was fortunate, though, by that time I had been on 11 years. Right. So I was 21 when I went to the academy. So, yes, 30. To that point. Yeah. So I had had some experience, you know, some pretty relevant experience with that. And I was a little reluctant to apply. My chief at the time nominated before the position and said, hey, you know, I'm here. We have a network. If you need something, pick up the phone call. You won't fail, those are his words. You won't fail. And you didn't know it was it was great. It was great. Learned a lot in that capacity.
Karen Ortman [00:08:47] What was the size of the student body there?
Marlon Lynch [00:08:49] North Carolina A&T maybe about ten thousand. Eleven thousand students at the time.
Karen Ortman [00:08:55] And you call that a small school, right?
Marlon Lynch [00:08:58] Yeah. Considering we're, what, 59,000, right? Yeah.
Karen Ortman [00:09:03] That's a decent size. Yeah. So where'd you go next?
Marlon Lynch [00:09:07] So I actually then I was recruited by Vanderbilt University. Actually, it was a succession plan at Vanderbilt. It was actually going into Vanderbilt Police Department as assistant chief. The current chief there or the chief at the time excuse me, Al Guyet, had 45 years of law enforcement experience and he was specifically hired at Vanderbilt to transition from a security department to police. Interesting. Yeah. And it was, man. The succession plan for me to come in as assistant chief for a couple of years, observe and then take over as chief to take it to the next level as far as bringing it in, you know, professionalizing the department and things of that nature. The attraction of Vanderbilt is, you know, Vanderbilt is a top 20 institution. Not only the university, but the medical center component, which was, which had been new to me at the time. Division 1, athletics. So the event management component to that were very attractive. I had never been to Nashville before, so that was interesting. That whole transition. And my oldest son had just been born at that point. There was a lot going on at that time, but I looked at as a great opportunity and so I accepted the position there as assistant chief. About a year later, Chief Guyet walks in my office and places his shield and his weapon on my desk and says, I'm going home. It's all yours.
Karen Ortman [00:10:38] Wow.
Marlon Lynch [00:10:38] Yeah. So two years turned into one year and it went well. It was a great experience of Vanderbilt. Lots of different exposure. Lots of things transpired during that particular time. So this is just great.
Karen Ortman [00:10:56] So how long were you there?
Marlon Lynch [00:10:58] I was at Vanderbilt for about five years. And the person that hired me at Vanderbilt University named Shania recruited me to the University of Chicago as an associate vice president for safety and security. And that was to build out the public safety function at the University of Chicago to take all of its different units that were somewhere in the university, somewhere in the medical center, somewhere in administrative divisions, to take all of them and put them together to create the Department of Safety and Security. So it was police security, medical center security, established the emergency management program, as well as environmental health and safety with that. And so they were also coming off of a tragedy. A graduate student was killed during the commission of a robbery off campus.
Karen Ortman [00:11:51] Mm hmm.
Marlon Lynch [00:11:52] No fault of any of the university departments. But what that investigation showed was that they didn't communicate well.
Karen Ortman [00:11:58] Mm hmm. And it was the university with the municipal police?
Marlon Lynch [00:12:03] Well, all of that university with the municipal police department being Chicago PD, but more significantly, internally between the police department, the medical center, security department, eight years at the University of Chicago, which was interesting because of the extended patrol area as well, actually providing police services to the neighboring community.
Karen Ortman [00:12:22] Plus you were home. So I'm sure there was an investment that you had personally and professionally. Making it all kind of succeed and work the way you envisioned it. So then I know now from the University of Chicago you came to NYU.
Marlon Lynch [00:12:42] That's correct. Yeah.
Karen Ortman [00:12:43] So what were the factors that influenced you to come to NYU?
Marlon Lynch [00:12:48] Well, it was a vice president position. So that meant not only having a seat at the table, but a voice at the table. Also a global role. As you all know, NYU is a global institution with portal campuses in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai and then the global academic centers. And it was to centralize the public safety function for the university, as well as expand the emergency management components to it, integrate the technology components it was to build it out.
Karen Ortman [00:13:26] So what does a typical day or week look like for Marlon Lynch at NYU?
Marlon Lynch [00:13:32] I don't know if anything is typical. Well, it was like today I started with a morning conference call, 730 this morning, our time to Abu Dhabi. So it was, they're nine hours ahead of us. So it was maybe about six thirty or so for their day six thirty p.m. conference call with them actually scheduled to be in Abu Dhabi next week to meet with the team. They're sort of closing out the semester. That as well, we have board meetings this week here in New York. So attending the board meetings with our board of trustees. Yes. Compstat, that is our accountability meeting where we discuss the previous 14 days and the next 14 days and what our plans and strategies are.
Karen Ortman [00:14:34] Having come from law enforcement, I have participated in Compstat for several years. Marlon actually brought Compstat to public safety here at NYU. Can you share with our listeners why you thought that was important?
Marlon Lynch [00:14:52] What it does is it forces the department to talk to each other. That's one piece to it. It also provides strategies as opposed to just discussions. And it also shows your productivity or lack thereof productivity. But the other components is that you can actually see what's going on. Everyone in the department, it's not just you and I having a conversation, it's all of the management within a department meeting and sharing information consistently. And there's also it it compels you to plan on a daily basis.
Sabah Fatima [00:15:31] Yeah, it's a great communication strategy.
Marlon Lynch [00:15:33] Yeah, it is. And it also provides you with with your metrics. It puts all of your data in one particular location where it's accessible to everyone. And it also allows you to provide information of what you do to your community. When asked.
Karen Ortman [00:15:49] So what do you consider to be your biggest challenge or challenges leading? And why use Department of Public Safety?
Marlon Lynch [00:16:00] An extremely diverse population and one of the world's largest cities with the global presence. That in itself is very is very challenging. It is very challenging with that, so. But, you know, it's we've been fortunate over the past three and a half years to build a very good team, both making use of staff that were here and bringing in and recruiting as well. The university administration has been extremely supportive of the various initiatives we have. You know, one of our goals has been to be more engaging with the community, which is, you know, a development program like this to involve our students in our day to day operations of the department and to lead or or co-lead initiatives. So it's challenging, but that's part of the attraction to the role. I mean, who wants to come to work and be bored and know exactly what you're gonna do every day, right? So.
Karen Ortman [00:17:02] So you have three years in now, then, a three and a half?
Marlon Lynch [00:17:07] Yeah, so three and a half years in.
Karen Ortman [00:17:10] What do you see as your biggest accomplishment in public safety?
Marlon Lynch [00:17:15] Oh, wow. We've done a lot in three and a half years to to pick one. I'm not sure. I'm not chilly to pick one.
Karen Ortman [00:17:28] Top three?
Marlon Lynch [00:17:29] Top three. OK. Can put a number of things like Jimmy Fallon, top three? But then I think probably the top component is just. I think we have earned a tremendous amount of credibility in this timeframe. And what I mean by that is that I remember probably within the first year, a lot of things were questioned about why.
Karen Ortman [00:17:52] I remember that, too. Yeah.
Marlon Lynch [00:17:55] Why? Why should we do this or why should we allow you to do this? Right. And so a lot of the why has been removed. And it's OK. I trust you. I trust you. How can we help? How can we make it better?
Karen Ortman [00:18:11] Well, the credibility came really in large part with Marlon. And he's not going to say that. I can say it because I work in the department of public safety. But clearly, your experience and your leadership up to this point now at NYU has brought a level of credibility that to the department, to your to your position that I had never seen since I'd been here. And it's six years now.
Karen Ortman [00:18:39] So I understand that you're a commissioner for CALEA, the Commission on Accreditation for law enforcement agencies. And you are the former president of IACLEA, the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators. Can you explain each organization and how they differ and intersect with higher education?
Marlon Lynch [00:19:00] Sure. CALEA is an accrediting agency that was created and established or established in 1979 by the four primary law enforcement organizations, the IACP which is the International Association of Chiefs of Police, NOBLE, National Organization for Black Law Enforcement Executives PERF, which is the Police Executive Research Forum and the NSA, which is the National Sheriffs Association. And those organizations recognized the need for creating best standards, proven standards, and to have an accrediting body that could independently assess and govern in regards to law enforcement or public safety agencies actually achieving and maintaining the accreditation piece. There are 21 commissioners. Those commissioners range and experience from police chiefs to county sheriffs, judges. We have currently two state Supreme Court judges that sit on the commission. City managers or town managers. Professors And what's the other, oh components from communication centers as well?
Karen Ortman [00:20:21] Well, really a diverse group.
Marlon Lynch [00:20:23] Yeah, very diverse because it the purpose is to have all levels of expertise within the field to be able to look at it from your perspective and what you and your subject matter bring to the group and to be able to contribute to it. So it's an accrediting body. It is, all of the agencies that participate aren't doing it voluntarily. So it's no one's forced to do it. It's this an effort with that. So it's it's set up for the betterment of the profession. With that, IACLEA, the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators was created primarily to serve as a professional resource for higher ed public safety administrators and well over fifteen hundred institutions that are represented. The largest two like us of NYU to the smallest of which is a small college, something like that. The representation. And it is truly an international association. Yeah, it is. It's a great resources, a very great resource for that. And I had the privilege of being elected president. I believe it was like 2009 or something like that. After serving on the board of directors for several years and it is this primary purpose is to be a resource to share information with him, with with others within the profession. Right. And it is comprised of agencies that have both sworn and non sworn officers in rural and in urban areas. The resources are endless are endless with that. So.
Karen Ortman [00:22:14] So when we talk about resources, is it training resources? Is it resources for, you know, in furtherance of investigations that might be ongoing at various institutions?
Marlon Lynch [00:22:30] Actually, all of the above. So. So training there is an executive development institute. There is a first line supervisors training curriculum. There are interest groups, investigators, detectives. They have their own subcommittees for various topics and specialties, victim services, computer, just all any wherever there is a need, those resources are available. Everything from the Clery Act components, the compliance that goes along with that. There is an annual conference that lasts for, I believe, three-to-five days with various topics. And there are keynote speakers that are brought in from the Department of Justice, Department of Education, city and state agencies. And then all a lot of the members who likely also present during that time are regional resources are available as well.
Karen Ortman [00:23:31] Do institutions of higher learning have to be members of IACLEA in order to take advantage of the training and the resources that you mentioned.
Marlon Lynch [00:23:41] They're available to everyone. I think the difference, the benefit of it is that if there is a cost associated, if you're a member, in some cases there's no cost associated with the training. If there are costs associated, it's reduced price for members as opposed to nonmembers.
Karen Ortman [00:24:00] In 2008, you were featured in Security magazine's top 25 Most Influential People in the Security Industry list for 2008, which included government leaders, industry authors and research pioneers to name a few. Very impressive. I want to mention that because I know that you would never say it, but that is quite an honor. Most recently, in April of this year, you were honored by your alma mater Michigan State University and inducted onto the School of Criminal Justice Wall of Fame. Another great honor.
Marlon Lynch [00:24:37] Thank you.
Karen Ortman [00:24:38] Congratulations. And and what does that recognition mean for you?
Marlon Lynch [00:24:43] That one specifically means a lot. Obviously, you know, my my love for Michigan State is, you know, fully known by those who are familiar with me. But also, I can remember being a student there in the criminal justice program and walking by that wall.
Karen Ortman [00:24:59] And you ever imagined that you would be.
Marlon Lynch [00:25:01] Oh, no. Oh, no. Hell, no, sorry. No, no, I didn't. I didn't imagine that I would be on that wall. So it's significant for me to see that. Peer recognition to me is the best form of recognition.
Karen Ortman [00:25:18] Yeah, absolutely.
Marlon Lynch [00:25:20] So no, that wouldn't have been that way. And, you know, and if my boys I've actually taken them by their since and they're there to see it. So so it's pretty cool. That one's pretty cool. That one meets a lot.
Karen Ortman [00:25:32] That is very cool.
Sabah Fatima [00:25:35] As a graduate student, I've received many emails from you, ranging from school closing to NYU safety alerts and timely warnings. I'm interested in learning about the process by which safety alerts and timely warnings are issued.
Marlon Lynch [00:25:49] Sure. So those standards are actually set by the Department of the U.S. Department of Education in regards to that. And there's several components to it. And it is not something to easily digest with that. So in its simplest form, every institution is required to identify their Clery geography. And so that's part of the Clery Act in itself. And so the geography is based on your presence within that particular location. So for us, it is not as simple as for some institutions of higher education. You know, some have a true traditional campus. To where, it's just pretty much one piece. Europe, you know, on campus. Right. You know, our quad. Happens to be Washington Square Park. Right. And, you know, a city park, it's all over. So that's what sort of makes it a little difficult to explain for us here in Washington Square. It's probably our most contiguous piece of property for for a Clery geography. With that, and even then, it's not just a perfect square, it's bits and pieces. And so it tends to go as we sort of splinter off. You know, most of our residence halls are not here here on the square either. And so each piece of property has its when it's separate from here on Washington Square, it's pretty much from the sidewalk to the building and what's inside itself. And so when there are certain crimes are certain things that happen within that geography, we are required to alert our community. OK, so visual aids work very well in this instance, but we're not in this situation.
Marlon Lynch [00:27:41] OK, so if you would imagine if you just, you know, imagine all the buildings around in Washington Square Park. OK. That's one piece of geography. But then if you were to take like what? Third, third north residence. All right. There's one piece of NYU property we have and it just be that particular facility from sidewalk to building, right? Yeah. So then we go across the river to Brooklyn. Right. and so we take the metro tech sort of geography for that. But even that in itself, it's not all of it because we don't occupy all of the buildings there at this time. Right. So that's why I can be a little confusing to our community because, you know, sometimes you think, well, it's right here. Why did you know this particular incident happened right there? Why am I not notified? In most cases, it's because it was not within the Clery geography. If there is an incident or crime that happens maybe near a residence hall or a location where we can issued a targeted message, sometimes we will deliver that message directly to those that could be impacted. Maybe it goes to 1,000 community members as opposed to fifty-nine thousand because of the proximity of the incident to that particular building or facility.
Sabah Fatima [00:29:00] How would you know when and where to send it to? Like, do you send it to people living in those residence halls?
Marlon Lynch [00:29:06] In some cases, yes. Whether or not it could have a direct impact on the NYU community. So, for example, a couple of years ago there was an incident on West Side Highway to where an individual drove a truck on to the sidewalk in the area. Right. And I was actually I believe was on Halloween. And we had everything. Some other things going on with that. We did send a message in that instance, even though it was not in the Clery geography. Yes. It was significant enough to alert our community that that incident did occur in that particular area. So, again, the severity of the incident, proximity, timing, a lot of that goes into making a determination on whether to send a message or not.
Sabah Fatima [00:29:58] Regarding school closing for inclement weather, for example. How is that decision reached as to whether to close NYU or not?
Marlon Lynch [00:30:06] Yes. So we generally follow the New York City decision making process with that, primarily regarding the public school system because of the impact with that. And we share some of those, aside from our community maybe being impacted by the fact that the schools, the public schools are closed. What is taken in consideration by the city is also the impact of mass transit and the status of the roads and things of that nature. And so we tend to follow their lead in regards to that. But our sort of general sort of parameters on that is we would like to give a three hour notice. So for morning, we try to make a decision by 5:00 a.m. cancelation for evening operations, we try to do so maybe by 4 or 3 p.m. to give enough notice with that. That is also something it's because we do have a lot of people that commute in, you know, as far as from Connecticut, New Jersey, Long Island, whatever it may be, sometimes the conditions are different there than what they are here in the city. And so it's not based on what the weather conditions are at their particular location. It's based on what's occurring here.
Sabah Fatima [00:31:23] So you're at Michigan State, you're at Southern Methodist, Vanderbilt, University of Chicago. What are some similarities and differences from those into two institutions and NYU?
Marlon Lynch [00:31:35] All are very different. Oh, it's good news. The list is it goes on and on. I mean, so for example, for us NYU, we are truly urban, right? You know, you recognize our buildings by the purple and white flags on the outside. Right in Michigan State's a true campus. Right. You know, when you're on campus there without a flag and a traditional setting like that. Public / Private. There's a difference. There's a difference in operating with that.
Sabah Fatima [00:32:07] What's the biggest difference?
Marlon Lynch [00:32:08] Between the public and private? Yeah. Sometimes it can be size actually NYU has the enrollment that we have is really not consistent with private schools. Usually it's a smaller enrollment. The public schools tend to have a large enrollment like us. I would say actually probably one of the major differences is Division 1 athletics compared to like a Division 3. With that, the event management components to being a Vanderbilt for like a football Saturday night that bring you bring a lot of external people on the campus at one time. The impact of what occurs that day is tremendous, with that. What is consistent are the priority? The priorities are, you know, other student and how we provide service to them. In regards to that, I believe there are a lot of differences with that.
Sabah Fatima [00:33:05] What are the the top five safety tips you would give to any new student?
Marlon Lynch [00:33:13] So I hesitate to give like five and not because I think that they're more because I think actually circumstances and comfort level in your experiences actually gauge how you should respond. Right. Because if I give you five, you know, they may not all be applicable. All right. Your comfort level to Karen comfort level in those same situations are gonna be different.
Sabah Fatima [00:33:36] So if you were going to teach a college course, what would it be?
Marlon Lynch [00:33:41] I think. I would want to stay in my comfort zone for something like that, right? If I'm supposed to actually be the professor or the instructor in this sense, I think I would appreciate like an introductory level to like a career in public safety or law enforcement. Yeah, yeah, because I think that that's the benefit I think is on a front. I think we miss a lot. And then sort of the introductory classes in regards to regards to that.
Karen Ortman [00:34:13] I think you should create a course introduction to public safety security in higher education.
Marlon Lynch [00:34:24] Duly noted. OK.
Karen Ortman [00:34:27] Since your arrival at NYU, you've placed a significant importance on victim services. In all seriousness. So can you share with our listeners why victim matters were an important agenda item for you and how your ideas have been implemented here in the Department of Public Safety?
Marlon Lynch [00:34:47] Oh yeah. Well, in my almost 27 year career, what has been very consistent are the needs of victims. Whether it's sort of a municipal setting, county or state or higher ed environment. Those needs are consistently apparent.
Karen Ortman [00:35:13] I think I've equal the years and I completely agree with you.
Marlon Lynch [00:35:16] Yeah. So that's very consistent. And specifically in in in our setting here in an educational setting, because we have - it's a residential community primarily with an age group from 17 years of age to 24 or 25. And if you think about what's experienced during that particular time frame in every aspect from a stolen cell phone to being a victim of sexual assault to being hazed, there's a lot that goes on and then the services are not readily apparent. And so my emphasis on victim services comes from the experience of what twenty seven years have told me.
Karen Ortman [00:35:59] Mm hmm. OK, so you know that we have a therapy puppy in training.
Marlon Lynch [00:36:08] Yes.
Karen Ortman [00:36:08] Archie. Yes. Your idea. And we have our victim services unit and we now have our podcast, all of which have been supported by you and the leadership of public safety. And I'm sure embraced by members of leadership here at NYU. So for that, I thank you. And I'm sure the victims that are served by the victims services unit thank you as well.
Marlon Lynch [00:36:45] Well, there are many components that are needed. Right. And I think that as sort of broad as we can be and what we offer the better to be able to not necessarily specialize, rely on one or two particular things, but you need to be creative. We need to be consistent in what we're offering and what works? That's what I'm interested in.
Sabah Fatima [00:37:14] So you have tremendous experience. If you could talk to an NYU student listener, consider your career in higher education, public safety. What advice would you give that person?
Marlon Lynch [00:37:30] I would say. One, be engaged as a student. First off, do something that allows you to familiarize yourself with life in in higher education, not just from a student perspective. And what I mean by that is, well, actually, example, you're you're a perfect example of it, right. You're here as a student. But what you are experiencing working with Karen in this particular initiative for victim services gives you a professional perspective.
Sabah Fatima [00:38:07] Two completely different experiences.
Marlon Lynch [00:38:10] Exactly. So it's practical, all right. And so that practical experience gives you the insight and also a skill that you would not normally have been able to obtain.
Sabah Fatima [00:38:21] Yeah.
Marlon Lynch [00:38:21] So I would say that's an important component to that. I'd say on my own experience would be an RA. You know, Ari's experience. My goodness. You do see a lot there's a lot that goes on in the residence halls, what RAs have to deal with. That is a very good training ground for that student leadership participating in student government or student Senate and or student organizations. It puts you you're still a student, of course, but it exposes you to leaders within the university, but also the processes that are in place with it. So I would say experience other things besides of just being a student with that. And you have to enjoy being on campus. If you don't enjoy being on campus, then no. Then it's not the career for you.
Sabah Fatima [00:39:12] I also feel like I like doing other experiences make you love the campus too.
Marlon Lynch [00:39:17] I think it provides a full experience. Yeah. All right. It's a full experience.
Sabah Fatima [00:39:24] Is there anything you would like to add before concluding this episode of You Matter?
Marlon Lynch [00:39:31] No, I thaink you and I think Karen for your work and in regards to this particular initiative. You know, we we talk about various things and I'm more of the impact. And what's the product and the impact of this initiative, I think has been great for those that may not have initially sought services through the Department of Public Safety and the impact, I think we're just starting to begin to feel that. So that is very positive impact. Thank you.
Karen Ortman [00:40:06] Thank you. This is just the beginning.
Sabah Fatima [00:40:08] Thank you to our guest, Marlon Lynch and to all of our listeners for joining us on today's episode of You Matter. If any information presented today was triggering or disturbing. Please feel free to contact the wellness exchange at 212-443-9999. Make sure to share like and subscribe to more podcasts like these on Apple podcasts, Google Play and Spotify.