Public Service Academy utilizes Ti Training Simulator

By AMALIA KORTRIGHT/Staff Writer

Columbiana– The Shelby County College and Career Center’s Public Service Academy recently introduced the Ti Training Simulator to its curriculum. Through the Ti Training Simulator, students who are studying for careers in law enforcement or firefighting will learn how to properly use force in a real-life situation.

“Before, we could only talk to them about the use of force,” said Griffin. “In a law enforcement career, they need to know how to use weapons and to respect weapons. This training simulator shows them how quickly things can change and escalate when responding to various situations, such as traffic stops or domestic violence incidents,” said Instructor Gary Griffith.

The training simulator involves the use of a projection screen and mock weapons. The mock weapons simulate the use of pepper spray, tasers and guns. Interactive video scenarios are utilized to teach students when and how force is used appropriately.

Scenarios include active shooters, assaults involving weapons, armed burglaries, domestic disturbances, hostage situations, traffic stops, DUIs and terrorist threats.

Griffin said that the program has over 600 scenarios that are based off of events that have happened in the past. Each year, 35 new scenarios are added to the simulator.

“Being mentally prepared is probably one of the most important things that you can be in law enforcement. It will allow students to get a better look at what law enforcement is like,” Griffin said.

According to Griffin and Principal Zach McWhorter, the Ti Training System serves as a way of recruiting new students for the Public Service Academy.

“It gives our students an advantage. They are more prepared to go into law enforcement careers,” Griffin said. “These are tough scenarios that most trained law enforcement officers would mess up on. Having this available to our students means that they are being very well prepared for various situations that they may encounter on the job.”

McWhorter said that bringing the Ti Training Simulator to the Public Service Academy was originally Griffin’s idea.

“We felt like it would be a great tool for our public service program. A lot of research was involved,” McWhorter said.

No police departments in Shelby County currently have any kind of simulation software to train new officers. However, law enforcement officers and firefighters who work in Shelby County can now train with the simulator.

“We’re looking to make more community partnerships. We know that the local police and fire organizations have done a lot for us. This is an opportunity for them to train here, and this is an opportunity for us to give back to them,” McWhorter said.