site stats

CAMPUS CLIMATE – THE SALVATION ARMY College for Officer Training
Suffern, New York, September 1, 2019


Campus Environment

               The Salvation Army College for Officer Training for the Northeastern Territory of the United States is located in Suffern, New York, a small village but with easy access to New York City.  The town of Suffern is composed of a number of small, family-owned businesses, a fine hospital, a train station for commuters to larger communities in New Jersey and New York, restaurants and single- and multiple-family homes.  The town of Suffern in New York is also contiguous with Mahwah, New Jersey.  Both Mahwah and Suffern maintain that small town or village feel.

The physical resources, particularly instructional facilities, are designed, maintained and managed so that the College can fulfill all of its purposes.  We seek to allow cadets to meet and achieve their educational objectives while living in a collective community of God-honoring and loving families and singles.  Adequate and separate spaces are set apart for all educational and living functions and services that individuals and families would require including: 1) instruction, 2) support service, 3) food services, 4) administration, and 5) child care facilities. The Campus is a welcoming residential space and all cadets live on grounds with their immediate family (except adult children, in most cases) in separate or shared (for most singles) housing. 

In all respects, the campus is people-friendly with child, youth and adult space for active living.  The campus contains a full-size gymnasium, a smaller gym and work-out spaces and modern equipment exist either in dormitory settings or attached to the main instructional buildings for use by all adults and supervised youth.  Equipment and opportunities for outside exercise and team play exist with a youth soccer field, walking/running paths and bicycle opportunities and it is not at all unusual to encounter deer and other wildlife while exercising.  Finally, a fully functional, licensed Family Care Center (similar to any licensed nursery and preschool) with two playgrounds and a separate staff is provided on-campus, with very modest expense to cadets/students and at reasonable, below-average-rate-for-the-area charge to some employees who need/elect this benefit.

“The College for Officer Training Campus is a place where laughter is heard and happy memories are made. Often, through the stress and difficult times of growth it’s the relationships and connections you make that form you into the vibrant and Godly leader you will become.”    
Cadet Kiara Blaire

For instruction, sufficient equipment is set aside for every function required, either by individuals or, frequently, in a shared environment.  Good facilities exist for the more limited public performances by cadets in a large (250+ seating) auditorium and a similar, attractive chapel (200+ seating).  Most classrooms are smaller (capacity 18 to 36), however, 2 are intermediate in size (45 to 56 capacity) and the auditorium also serves as a lecture hall.  A piano laboratory and music room (for band and ensemble instrumental practice/playing) are also available to individuals and cadet groups (along with a number of differing musical instruments, brass and string) and are used for appropriate instruction.

The College provides each matriculating cadet with a laptop computer upon arrival and an I.T. department and staff aid in instruction and maintenance of these learning resources.  Additionally, printers and back-up computers are available in the I.T. department and printers are also available in the Library.   Smart Boards for electronic instructional presentations exist in the two intermediate-sized classrooms and 8 of the smaller ones, 3 electronic printers are available in dormitories and all instructors are also furnished with computers.           

               The Brengle Library at the College for Officer Training is a welcoming, comfortable, quiet and sufficiently large space within the Administration Building which can accommodate a variety of learning and leisure activities for cadets and their families.  The library collection houses print materials, including books, journals, monographs and serials, and a variety of non-print media adequate in breadth and depth to support the institution’s mission and curriculum, in addition to full-text electronic databases.  Additionally, some of the holdings are geared towards younger learners, as cadets will teach and nurture their children.

Campus Living

The College has a current enrollment of 63 cadets.  The population living on campus, including some instructional staff and families of those staff and all students and their families, is usually 140 to 160 each year.  The cadets have shown an average of 79.4% retention rate over the two years of study and a 91.0% graduation on time rate from 2009 to present. Cadets and their families will spend considerable time on the campus as a living and caring community.  Campus grounds are well structured for various experiential learning activities such as outdoor walking/prayer walk, exercise, and community gatherings in lounge areas and so much more.

Life at CFOT is part college campus and part living with a large extended family.  
Everyone you see is ready with a friendly smile or to lend a hand.   

Cadet David LaBossiere

Campus Climate Report - 2019

               The College maintains a safe and secure, but open, campus.  A private twenty-four hour, seven days per week security firm and employees, as well as the local Sheriff’s Department are initial contact providers.  Additionally, Salvation Army staff in the Offices pf Personnel and Business are continuously available for reporting incidents and triage.  The Suffern Fire Department responds and has trained on campus for any incident of reported injury or fire.  Finally, almost contiguous with the campus is a modern, exceptional hospital with complete ER facilities and state-of-the-art equipment and professional health treatment providers.

               The College abides by and attempts to meet and comply with all aspects of the Federal Clery Act against violence on campus (“Enough is Enough” laws) and the Educational Acts of New York State (Act 129B) which aims to protect all parties on college campuses and higher learning institutions.  As part of our responsibilities, a crime and incident report is required to be filed yearly and displayed on our Website.  During the most recent academic, two-year periods (2017-19), the major reporting incidents on campus were 25 false fire alarms, 11 reported door or elevator malfunctions, 2 reported thefts, 2 gas leaks detected and 1 report of a vagrant on campus.  No crimes against person or vandalism of personal property were reported.