Personal safety will be at the center of two classes Nicolet College in Rhinelander will offer multiple times in July and August.
One class is a two-hour overview on how to stay safe and defend yourself. The second is a more in depth, four-hour class that will cover the same topics and feature additional demonstrations and hands-on activities.
Criminal Justice Services specialist Tim Gerdmann says the first session is geared toward college or high school student safety, such as if they're alone in a parking lot. The second is a personal safety academy, focusing on your safety anywhere...
".....teach people to identify and avoid dangerous encounters and discourage an attacker. 90 percent of the time that is going to be enough to protect you. We're trying to break people from their tunnel vision, as it were....."
Gerdmann says another topic that will be covered is the use of pepper spray...
"what we're finding is very few people actually use the pepper spray. More so, if they have it in their pocket and they put their hand on it, it gives them that prompt to be more aware of their environment and what is going on around them...."
The practice pepper spray canisters students will use in both academies will contain water and not any actual active pepper spray.
The first academy will be held from Wednesdays beginning July 19, at the Birchwoods Center on the Nicolet Campus. The second academy will be held Saturdays beginning July 22 also in the Birchwoods Center. Youth 14-17 years old need parental permission to attend.
Gerdmann says call him at the Nicolet College campus to register or get more information.