The strictness at Centre is centered around a policy of fairness. The idea tends to be that students are young adults and free to make their own choices, as long as they fall within College policy. There is a definite sense of adult presence that monitors the campus, even the parties. This is more of a reassuring presence than an authority figure monitoring your activities. Mainly, DPS's role is to keep people from doing stupid things, like kicking down lampposts or starting fights. This lax attitude really only extends to alcohol, however, and things like drug abuse or vandalism are not tolerated. The emphasis is on safety and security, rather than on harassing students with fines.
Students know the DPS officers by name and vice versa, demonstrating the close relationships between the students and administration. On individual halls or buildings, the RAs are in charge of policing the dorms and enforcing regulations. This is a plus for students, because being caught by a peer instead of an authority figure just works out better sometimes. The RAs tend to be more lax about the regulations, i.e. having an alcoholic beverage in an original container, versus in a Solo cup, will get you a quick $25 fine from a DPS officer, while your RA will probably let it slide. The RAs are well trained by the Student Life Office, and selection for the RA position is very competitive, but the students chosen tend to be regular kids with good social skills whose main concern is often safety, not issuing fines.