Firearms Safety Program
The University of Illinois Police Department wants its campus community members who choose to own firearms at home to do so safely.
The Faculty-Staff Firearms Safety Program gives those community members a chance to learn from trained police officers how to safely handle, store and use firearms.
The shooting range is available from 10 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. on the first Saturday of each month (except for days of Fighting Illini home football games), at the University of Illinois Police Training Institute Tactical Training Center, 609 E. Curtis Rd., Champaign. During the summer, women’s and couple’s sessions are offered from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The range may also be available for limited practice on two evenings per month between 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. Exact dates are provided in advance in a monthly email newsletter.
The facilities at the Police Training Institute Tactical Training Center are designed for teaching defensive firearms skills to police officers and are most suited for handguns and short-range (60 yards maximum) rifles and shotguns. There are no trap or skeet facilities. Participants must provide their own eye and ear protection, firearms and commercially-manufactured ammunition.
Participants are required to attended an orientation class at the range on one of the Saturday range dates. These classes are offered during the months of February, April, June, August, October and December at the PTI range class room from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm. This class includes:
- An introduction to firearms safety
- Safe handling and terminology
- Safe operation of a firing range
- Membership dates, fees and responsibilities
- A summary of laws pertaining to use and ownership of firearms in Illinois and special laws concerning campus
- Practical aspects of shooting, like stance, grip, trigger press, follow-through, loading, unloading and de-cocking
- Hands-on practice with training weapons in the classroom
- Hands-on practice and training on the range with live fire
The program is available to:
- Current or retired U. of I. faculty, staff and academic professionals
- U. of I. graduate students
- Undergraduate students who are members of Illini-On-Target (in good standing);
- Those who work for a U. of I. allied agency
- Spouses or legal partners of members (no children).
If you are an Illinois resident you must also possess a valid Illinois Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card. A valid FOID card is not required to attend the orientation training sessions for new members.
You must also complete an application form and submit a photocopy of your Faculty/Staff identification card or spouse’s ID and FOID card. Applicants are screened by a background check for criminal records. Possession of a valid FOID card does not guarantee acceptance into the program.
Annual dues of $30 per member is assessed to cover the cost of operation and supplies. The season runs from July 1 through June 30. The fee is reduced to $15 for new members who join the program during the second half of a season. Payment may be made by check, payable to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Online payment is available to existing members.
Sign up for our mailing list if you’re interested. Someone from the University of Illinois Police Department will follow up to inform you of the date and location of the next new member orientation class.