Oct 11 2021
Before we get too far into discussing campus carry, I should probably explain what campus carry is.
Campus carry took effect on January 1, 2016. Texas government code §411.2031 allows LTC holders to carry a concealed handgun on the campus of an institution of higher education or private or independent institution of higher education in Texas. The president or other chief executive officer of an institution of higher education in Texas may establish reasonable rules, regulations, or other provisions regarding the carrying of concealed handguns by license holders on campus or on-premises located on the campus of the institution. Private or independent institutions of higher education may prevent a license holder from carrying on the premises but not from storing or transporting a firearm or ammunition in a locked vehicle. This applies to all license holders, including students, faculty, and visitors.
It’s important to note that Texas government code §411.2031 is specific to License holders and does not apply to non-license holders.
How to carry?
Now that you know you can carry on campus (assuming you have a license), let’s talk about how to carry safely and smartly. Texas government code §411.2031 does not set any requirements or restrictions on how the handgun must be carried other than concealed. Meaning, handguns may be carried on your person or in a bag at your discretion. However, there are a few things you should consider before deciding how to carry on campus. How much stuff are you already carrying? Will your existing bag safely and securely accommodate your firearm? If you plan to carry on your body, what will be the most comfortable position when toting around your school stuff? Will that same position be comfortable when sitting in class? (you don’t want to be adjusting your holster in class after setting your bag down.) Finally, what will you do if your first class is in an area where carry is allowed, and your second class is in a prohibited area like a lab or testing facility?
Once you have decided how to carry it, you have to find a suitable holster or bag. Fortunately, everyone and their dog manufactures holsters nowadays. And plenty of companies manufacture concealment bags with college students and professionals in mind, which means lots of functional room for laptops, notebooks, and other school supplies, plus a dedicated (sometimes lockable) firearm pouch. Be sure to open our Friday email for some campus carry bag recommendations.
Now you have your holster or bag sorted out, what’s next? GET TO THE RANGE AND PRACTICE! The first time you use your holster or bag SHOULD NOT be in a dangerous situation. Learn to safely use your holster or bag by practicing your presentation in our exclusive private suites. Not sure where to start with your holster or bag? No problem, our instructors are available to teach you in our Holster Draw class or a Private Lesson. Don’t let fear or apprehension keep you from learning to be safe and efficient with your equipment.
All land and buildings owned or leased by an institution of higher education or private or independent institution of higher education.
INSTITUTION OF HIGHER EDUCATION:
As defined in the Education Code §61.003, any public technical institute, public junior college, public senior college or university, medical or dental unit, public state college, or other agency of higher education as defined in Chapter 61 of the Texas Education Code.
PRIVATE OR INDEPENDENT INSTITUTION OF HIGHER EDUCATION:
As defined in the Education Code §61.003, an accredited private or independent college or university that is organized under the Texas Non-Profit Corporation Act (Article 1396-1.01 et seq., Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes) and exempt from taxation under Article VIII, Section 2, of the Texas Constitution and Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (26 U.S.C. Section 501)
Local Campus Carry Guide:
Tarrant County College: https://www.tccd.edu/services/police-department/campus-carry/campus-carry-regulations/
Weatherford Community College: https://www.wc.edu/campus-carry
Texas State: https://www.txstate.edu/campuscarry
By Cassie Shockey, Customer Programs Manager & LTC Instructor
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