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Communications Specialist For Public Safety


The Communication Specialist functions in the capacity of police/security dispatcher, with the Department of Public Safety (DPS).  Assigned to the Operations Division, the position is responsible for staffing the Communications Center, serving as the first point of contact for students, faculty, staff, guests, visitors and affiliates of the University.  This position is accountable for performing in a multitasked environment which calls for expeditiously, accurately, and simultaneously responding to all emergency and non-emergency requests and calls for service that come through the Communications Center (whether by telephone, on view, or walk-in). This process requires precision in receiving, routing, dispatching, recording, and making appropriate and timely notifications.  Primary duties include (but are not limited to) maintaining a constant, careful and accurate duty status (location, assignment, condition) of all field units, and dispatching and recording all incoming calls for service, while simultaneously monitoring and responding to various radio frequencies, telephone lines, life/safety alarm systems, CCTVs and monitors.   This position performs access control functions and various computer based data entry and records management functions as needed, or as assigned.     

  • Must be twenty-one (21) years of age at time of application and must be a US citizen.
  •  Must possess a high school diploma or GED.  Formal education hours, related experience, specialized training, and/or any combination of training and experience are preferred. 
  •  Candidates selected for employment, and employees in this job class may be subject to pre-employment and random drug testing.
  •  Candidates selected for employment must be able to successfully complete a specialized (job specific) training course identified by the Department, within one (1) year of employment.
  • Candidates selected for employment must undergo and successfully complete a field training and evaluation program during the ninety (90) day probationary period. 


  • Applicant must be able to obtain and maintain Special Police Officer (SPO) status through the District of Columbia, to include meeting and maintaining the prescribed requirements and qualifications associated with SPO status, pursuant with the Eligibility Requirements for Campus and University Special Police Officers as defined by the MPD Security Officer’s Management Branch (SOMB) Policy Manual.
  •  Applicant must possess a valid driver’s license prior to employment and maintain throughout employment.  Applicant must meet all eligibility requirements to drive a University vehicle, and must be able to be insured under the University’s automobile insurance. 


  • Ability to identify problems, relate findings and report facts with accuracy and precision.  Ability to apply sound judgment and decision making aptitude, particularly in situations pertaining to officer safety and overall public safety and security.
  •  Ability to exercise considerable discernment with respect toward intuitively recognizing unusual, suspicious, illegal and authorized activity or circumstances.  
  •  Ability to exercise well developed skills that reflect sensitivity and attention to detail (i.e.:  observant, perceptive, intuitive and responsible).    

 Guidelines include:  (1) working knowledge of University policies, procedures and protocols; (2) general knowledge of first responder roles and responsibilities; and (3) familiarity with local (D.C. and immediate area) public safety and security emergency responders and care providers (fire, hospital, EMS). 

  •  Proficiency in the practical application of widely used (contemporary) computer based applications (i.e.:  MS word, excel, computer aided design).
  • Ability to exercise strong verbal communication skills including voice enunciation, projection, articulation, control and command.  Must project a voice compatible in tone and diction with the radio and telephone systems, including communicating coherently over law enforcement radio frequencies.
  •  Ability to effectively and efficiently communicate with a diverse population of constituencies, with sensitivity, courtesy, enthusiasm and tact, particularly as it relates to fielding and responding to customer inquiries and complaints.
  • Ability to discern between emergency and non emergency situations, circumstances, requests, and calls for service, in the interest of initiating and applying appropriate levels of response, in accordance with established protocol. 


  • Forty (40) hours per week minimum.  This position may require irregular working assignments, which includes working nights, weekends, holidays, rotating shifts, swing shifts, and occasional callbacks, as needed, or as assigned.  

Designated as an “essential employee,” incumbent may be required to remain on duty beyond normal shift and/or be available on a 24-hour basis to report for duty without advance notice due to emergencies or staffing shortages. 


Operates the communications base station radio in accordance with proper radio procedure and FCC regulations.  Receives information from, and dispatches assignments to, various field units concerning reported incidents and activity such as:  suspicious or unusual circumstances, criminal and non-criminal activity, unauthorized activity, emergency and non-emergency calls for service, and various other public safety requests for service.

 Conducts receptionist duties such as greeting the customer and accurately fielding/routing customer complaints, questions, concerns and inquiries, whether by phone or in person, acting as first point of contact  for the general public.  Includes access control duties (i.e.:  guest sign in).  

  •  Handles several tasks occurring at the same time (i.e.: answering simultaneous ringing phone lines, greeting customer walk-ins, facilitating visitor/guest sign in, monitoring and maintaining communications with field units via the radio frequency, and accurately responding to information received, while recording activity on the official log).     
  •  Distinguishes, prioritizes and dispatches multiple calls for service as appropriate to their nature/urgency.  Maintains close consultation with the shift supervisor, particularly as it pertains to fielding matters of uncertainty, including keeping the shift supervisor immediately and continually informed on all aspects of activity coming through the Communications Center.      
  •  Maintains an accurate, complete and thorough daily activity log for recording all shift activity and significant incidents reported through the Communications Center (i.e.:  calls for service, notifications, point of information).  Completes work orders, referral forms, specified logs, shift reports, incident reports and other required paperwork to be forwarded to appropriate divisions for follow up.  Performs data entry as needed or assigned. 
  •  Recognizes important communications and prioritizes information received according to established policies and procedure, and with considerable latitude for judgment.  Initiates action based on information received, including relaying clear and concise information to field officers, supervisors and officials, and appropriate notification to various law enforcement and emergency response agencies.   
  •  Distributes all department issued equipment (keys, radios, batteries, flashlights) located within theCommunicationsCenter.  Ensures that all equipment is present and accounted for (signed in and out) at the start and end of each respective tour of duty.  Maintains access controls and restricts access to the Communications Center.    


  • This position includes the expectation that the employee will be able to effectively apply broad skill sets in circumstances that many be unforeseen at the time of hiring.  Accordingly, the position description, while comprehensive, should not be construed as limiting the opportunity for growth and future development of the scope of responsibility for this position.   


  • This position is expected to contribute to the effective and efficient operations of various campus activities and events.  In this interest, the following events may require participation in different capacities:
    • Commencement
    • Convocation
    • Cap and Gown
    • Family Weekend
    • Alumnae Reunion
    • Freshman Medal
    • Sophomore Pin
    • Junior Ring
    • Founder’s Day
    • Other events as needed or assigned


  • Physical demands of this position are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential tasks of this job.  This position is predominantly sedentary (by nature and design) and as such, the employee works seated at a desktop (console).  Employee is required to stand and walk, and may be required to perform some reaching, bending, flexing, lifting, and moving  at times.
  •  Specific vision abilities required by this job includes close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus.  This position requires constant visual attention to various computer monitors and displays and utilization of continuous hand and eye coordination. 
  •  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions.  While performing duties for this job, the employee is regularly required to use hand to finger; handle or feel objects, tools or controls; reach with hands and arms; talk and hear. 

 Interested and qualified candidates should send a letter of application referencing relevant experience and qualifications, contact information for three professional references, current resume and salary history to: The Office of Human Resources, Trinity Washington University, 125 Michigan Avenue, NE, Washington, DC 20017; FAX: 202.884.9123; email: 

Trinity Washington University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Access/Equal Opportunity Employer dedicated to the achievement of excellence and diversity among its students, faculty and staff. Trinity is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive community and strongly encourages all qualified individuals to apply.

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Trinity Office of Human Resources, 125 Michigan Avenue NE, Washington, DC 20017   Phone: 202-884-9121   Fax: 202-884-9123