Ashley Combs

Ashley Combs

Ashley CombsPolice Communications Operator (PCO) Ashley Combs joined the University of Maryland, Baltimore Police Department (UMBPD) just last month, but she's been working in the public safety field for more than a decade. In her 12 years as a PCO for the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Police, Combs has lots of practice staying calm under pressure.

"A woman on a capsized boat was screaming for help," Combs says. "I had to remain calm to gather enough information and get an officer to her location as fast as possible to rescue her from drowning."

Combs has been the first point of contact for several people in life-or-death situations. Her quick work and calm manner led to many people being rescued or saved. 

"PCOs receive all types of calls," she says. "My favorite part of my job is being able to help someone in need, no matter the situation."

On stressful days, Combs says she reminds herself that she has a responsibility to ensure each call is handled with the utmost professionalism. The PCO is currently working on her degree in business communications.

As a new employee to UMB herself, Combs encourages others to follow their dreams. "Create goals for your future that push you to be better in your personal life and career," she says. "The sky is the limit. Go for whatever you want and don't let anything discourage you!"

Outside of work, Combs likes to travel and spend time with family and friends. She says she will always find a way to make others smile or laugh if they're sad. "Life is too short. Enjoy every moment!"