South Texas College Department of Public Safety Chief Paul Varville has been named chief administrator for the upcoming Regional Center for Public Safety Excellence (RCPSE) scheduled for opening in the fall 2018.

Varville has extensive experience in law enforcement, serving as a Special Agent in Charge of the Criminal Investigation Division of the Internal Revenue Service, Federal Security Director with the Department of Homeland Security, and Chief Administrator of the South Texas College Department of Public Safety.

He has agreed to provide administrative oversight for the new RCPSE and lead the development of advanced training for law enforcement, public safety, fire science, and homeland security professionals.

Located at 4300 S. Cage Blvd. in Pharr, the RCPSE will make STC the first border community college in the nation to establish integrative training for local, state and federal professionals in law enforcement, public safety, fire safety and homeland security along the US/Mexico border.

Current and prospective agents or officers will be exposed to real-world scenarios by professionals with experience on the front lines of border security.

The $71.28 million dollar long-range master plan—that will transform the regional center to a Public Safety, Law Enforcement, Fire Science, and Homeland Security Campus by 2030—is on a 64-acre site, in Pharr, Texas with 180 additional acres available for future expansion.

The Master Plan will include 534,385 square feet of buildings, structures & driving track, and will be completed in three phases over the next decade.

Phase One is a $9.9 million dollar investment, set for completion in the Fall of 2018. It includes a spacious training center for Law Enforcement, Public Safety & Criminal Justice students, a driving skills/skid pad, a shooting simulation lab and a driving simulation lab.

Phase Two is a $10.6 million dollar investment in Fire Science & Homeland Security. Planned in this Phase are a multi-story fire training structure, two story residential training structure and a confined space/search and rescue training area, flashover training and a flammable liquid and gas training pad. Phase Two also includes an Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC), a cityscape with non-lethal simulation training capacity, and a covered shooting range with a firearm-training classroom.

Phase Three is a $50.6 million dollar investment in Integrative Homeland Security and will add a Physical Plant and expansive growth with the addition of several education and student services buildings.

“Our primary focus is to ensure that law enforcement and fire safety professionals in the Rio Grande Valley obtain continuing education in state of the art facilities to enhance their skills and on the academic side, provide college credits toward advanced degrees. We will be working with the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) to provide the training required for Texas peace officers”, Varville said.

“It can take up to 10 years for a peace officer to achieve a TCOLE master’s certificate, but we believe we will be able to expedite that process by continuously providing the necessary courses to achieve that level of training.” Varville said.

The RCPSE will feature customized skill training services to meet employer’s workforce needs. This summer, STC will offer advanced skills training courses on-site or at the campus closest to their agency.

For more information about the program and upcoming enrollment, please visit or call Victor Valdez at (956) 872-5671 or email