If you see a swarm of college students today at the city police headquarters on Lockwood Boulevard, don't be alarmed.

They're not staging a demonstration or getting arrested.

The students will be participating in the first Student Police Day, jointly sponsored by the College of Charleston's Student Government Association and the Charleston Police Department.

The idea, Police Chief Greg Mullen said, is to open lines of communication between college students and police officers.

"There has been a lot of discussion within the community about how students and the police have to interact with each other to have a better quality of life," Mullen said. "We all have a responsibility to do our part to make this a better place."

About 35 college students are expected, the chief said. There will be about 10 police officers and three residents from the neighborhoods near the college.

"We've created some scenarios that we're going to let the students participate in," Mullen said. "They'll play the role of a police officer responding to a call for a loud party, and we'll all see how they deal with it."

Another scenario will put a student in the role of an officer responding to a prowler call who is walking into a dark alley, Mullen said.

"It is important for students to understand that we are part of a larger community here in Charleston, and our actions not only affect us but also the other residents of the city," SGA president Isaiah Nelson said. "The day will allow students to get more familiar with the challenges police face."