Marquette Wire

MU Police Chaplain brings cookies, care to the department

Beausoleil+helped+create+the+MUPD+Mission+and+Vision+Statements+in+his+role+as+Chaplain.+Photo+by+Meredith+Gillespie%2Fmeredith.
Beausoleil helped create the MUPD Mission and Vision Statements in his role as Chaplain. Photo by Meredith Gillespie/meredith.

Beausoleil helped create the MUPD Mission and Vision Statements in his role as Chaplain. Photo by Meredith Gillespie/meredith.

Beausoleil helped create the MUPD Mission and Vision Statements in his role as Chaplain. Photo by Meredith Gillespie/meredith.

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If there are cookies laying around the Marquette Police Department office, there’s a good chance that they came from the Rev. Kent Beausoleil, MUPD’s chaplain.

Beausoleil has been at Marquette since fall 2014 and was officially named MUPD chaplain last fall. 

Being MUPD chaplain doesn’t involve a set schedule, but Beausoleil usually spends 10-15 hours per month at the MUPD offices. This time is spent doing informal visits with officers and supervisors. He also helped create the MUPD Mission and Vision Statements.

Overall, Beausoleil’s role involves providing pastoral support and care, in addition to praying for the department every day.

MUPD Chief Paul Mascari said Beausoleil is doing an excellent job getting to know officers and supervisors personally.

“He’s a very friendly, approachable guy,” Mascari said. “In the event something happens in our department, he is better able to serve us because he’s gotten to know the people within the department.”

To stay updated on department matters, Beausoleil occasionally meets with the night shift command staff or attends role call at 6 a.m. or 6 p.m.

Mascari considers Beausoleil a valuable link between MUPD and the university as a whole.

Beausoleil stressed the importance of his role in helping students become fully-realized human beings. “We want to make it not just an academic experience,” he said. “We want you to learn socially, emotionally and spiritually as well.”

Joining Marquette was a bit of a homecoming since Beausoleil grew up close by in Waukegan, Illinois. Before Marquette, Beausoleil’s life took a winding route.

After studying political science at Northern Illinois University and not finding a job related to his degree, Beausoleil worked in restaurants for a while. He held a variety of food service positions, including pastry chef, bartender, host, waiter and manager.

Since he interacted with many kinds of people as a restaurant employee, Beausoleil said he developed great communication skills, something that comes in handy as a priest.

After that, Beausoleil became an assistant village manager in Palatine, Illinois, and then a budget and risk officer for Rockford, Illinois. He worked with police and fire departments during both jobs.

Then Beausoleil worked for the Archdiocese of Chicago for three years as an administrative and financial consultant. He said it was during this time that he “felt called to the priesthood.”

He began the process at 32 and decided to join the Society of Jesus because the Jesuit priests he interacted with in Chicago “seemed to have a nice balance between … independence and community.”

After 10 years of formation studies, Beausoleil was ordained. He subsequently worked as an associate pastor at Xavier University’s campus in Cincinnati for eight years before coming to Marquette. He received his Ph.D. in student affairs and higher education from Miami University in Ohio.

Apart from MUPD, Beausoleil has a full-time job as associate dean of student development, where he helps with student organizations, programming, vocation promotion, leadership and large events like new student orientation and Late Night Marquette.

Beausoleil is also the Jesuit-in-residence at Schroeder Hall, a position he relishes. “I love it a lot,” he said. “It’s nice to interact with the students in a different capacity than in the office.” 

On top of all of his campus responsibilities, Beausoleil assists Campus Ministry at two churches in northeast Milwaukee.

Beausoleil said he’s impressed with MUPD’s work. “It’s amazing the amount of work they do for this campus and the professionalism and the service.”

He specifically praised the officers.

“They’re kind of the unsung heroes of the campus, making sure that students are taken care of and the safety of the university is at hand,” he said. “They’re active in trying to make this whole community a better place, which is great.”

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