As a current specialist with Cottonwood’s Police Department in Salt Lake City, police officer Beau Babka has a number of tasks to keep in order. They range from teaching criminal justice to students through the Salt Lake Community College system, as well as taking part in popular and local radio station 97.1 ZHT’s “Ask Beau” segment, and to taking care of a family of six children.
In 1995, Babka began a career as a teacher of criminal justice at Salt Lake Community College. Entering into his 16 year of teaching, Babka expresses his passion for teaching, which influences his lifestyle dramatically.
“Well, for me, it’s a little different now days. I’ve been an administrator, manager, leader, for quite some time. But currently, with Cottonwood Heights, I get to teach, and that’s what I love to do.”
When asked what a typical day on the job as a police officer looked like, Babka responded by saying, “My day is pretty much involved in training and things like that. I’m not involved in a day-to-day what we call “typical” police work, out in the car patrolling anymore.”
In explanation of a hectic situation, Babka stated, “I get to teach here at the college as well, but my typical day is going from meetings or helping people that may e-mail me. I get a lot of e-mails from folks and stuff like that. I do a lot of jumpin’ around. I get a lot of phone calls and people needing help or direction, and so, my day is pretty much, as they say, ‘In the service of others.'”
When it comes to reaching out to others, Babka shows compassion in saying, “I’m a pretty humble servant. I feel fortunate to be able to take the experience and all the things that I’ve done and all the things that I can do to help people facilitate, and so a typical day is really servin’ and talkin’ to people.”
As Babka’s future plans go, he is considering running for Salt Lake County Sheriff. “More information to come, but yes, I am headed down that direction,” said Babka. He has been diligently working towards this goal, and will make a formal announcement on Friday, Jan 29 at 11:00 a.m.
When asked about what he enjoyed most about teaching, Babka said simply, “Learning. Every time I teach, I learn even more. The neatest thing to see is how people succeed at whatever they do, whether it be criminal justice system issues or jobs or regular lives. That’s what I enjoy about teaching.”
Babka feels at his best when watching others succeed. Even students who have taken his course at the college, Criminal Justice (CJ) 1010, recognize his impact and abilities to help them. Ty Swackhammer, a current student and Criminal Justice major at Salt Lake Community College explains, “I like the fact that he can kinda use personal experiences to help teach the class.”
When giving advice to students, Babka states that, “It’s okay to explore. Research things. Don’t take things for granted. Look at the media–media’s good, but look at it yourself before you really come up with an opinion.”
In light of how he wants to influence students, Babka aims to instill a “can-do” attitude. He feels that all people are no less off than he is or anyone else and that all individuals can accomplish anything they want. Babka says, “I want to be able to motivate them. Instill them to be drawn to whatever it may be, but instill that attitude that, if I can do it, if I can be somewhat successful, then they can be successful.”
Babka encourages commitment, motivation and success, as well as demonstrating to others how this can be done.