Zeke Eubanks continues to serve his alma mater in SRO role
Now in his 16th year of working in law enforcement, Zeke Eubanks spends much of his time interacting with students at Hartselle High School. Through teaching special lessons in the classrooms and overseeing a student organization, Eubanks strives to build valuable relationships with the students that he encounters each day as school resource officer.
“The biggest highlight is when you are able to just connect with the kid that just really seems difficult to connect with. It gives you a big smile on your face when you are able to break through,” Eubanks said. “When you are finally able to get them on the right path, that’s a feeling that’s tough to beat.”
Eubanks is in his second year as SRO, and he said he comes into the education role naturally, having long family ties in the education field. Both of his sisters work in education, and his father is retired from education. Eubanks’ mother-in-law, Beth Emerson, works a few doors down from his office.
“It’s kind of like education is something that is very involved in my life; even though I went into law enforcement, it was a passion of mine,” Eubanks said.
With a career that began in the Hartselle Police Department in December 2003, Eubanks spent the early years of his career working in patrol before being assigned to the high school. He said the role allows him the opportunity to interact with students in a positive way.
“I would say the biggest change gong from patrol to school is just seeing more details in the children’s lives,” he said. “Usually on the road, we only dealt with kids in a negative light. Usually we didn’t have any contact with the kids unless we were called to their house or to some type of altercation of some sort. We get to see them in more of a positive role here.”
A 2000 graduate of Hartselle High, Eubanks now helps out in several classes, such as intro to law enforcement and forensics, as well as offers special lessons on safe social media usage and safe driving. He also oversees the student organization Students Against Destructive Decisions.
“Most of my day is just being seen. I am required to provide security, of course, but to also interact with the kids and see how their day is going,” Eubanks said.
Eubanks can also be found at a majority of the sporting events for the high school, something he said allows him to combine his love for sports with his passion for working with students. He said he is a huge baseball fan and has even helped coach several teams.
As Eubanks continues his career this year in the school system, he said he enjoys being able to serve his hometown.
“It’s always been a passion of mine,” he said. “I always wanted to go for a career where I could help others and serve my community and give back to the community that has given to me.”