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Shepherd, Blue Ridge CTC sign criminal justice agreement, start new monthly lecture series February 2

ISSUED: 19 January 2021
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens

SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV — Shepherd University and Blue Ridge Community and Technical College (BRCTC) have signed a 2+2 transfer agreement that will give students who earn an Associate of Applied Science in criminal justice a seamless transition to Shepherd’s Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice degree program with a law enforcement administration concentration.

Shepherd and BRCTC are also launching a new collaborative program titled “In Pursuit of Justice: Applied Criminal Justice Presentation Series” to be held the first Tuesday evening of the month throughout the spring semester.

The first presentation will take place Tuesday, February 2, at 7 p.m. via Zoom featuring Craig Smith a retired Winchester, Virginia, police officer and current BRCTC Criminal Justice Program coordinator. Smith a certified polygraph examiner, will share insight and dispel common myths about the art and science of polygraph examination, and will discuss how this tool is used in present-day criminal justice system activities. This event is free and open the public. To access the Zoom link, visit the Criminal Justice Lecture Series webpage.

Smith retired from the Winchester Police Department after a 26-year career. During his time with the department, Smith served in a variety of capacities including school resource officer, crime prevention officer, detective, crime scene investigator, polygraph examiner, canine officer, and a supervisor. Smith’s last assignment before retirement involved spearheading the department’s hiring, training, and statewide accreditation process. Although retired, Smith has maintained his state law enforcement certification and remains a part-time employee of the Winchester Police Department.

The new agreement between Shepherd and BRCTC will allow students earning an A.A.S. in criminal justice to easily continue their education at Shepherd in the law enforcement administration concentration, which is designed to prepare them for employment in policing, corrections, security, immigration, criminal investigation, rehabilitation counseling, and data analysis at the local, state, and federal levels.

“The new B.A. in criminal justice at Shepherd offers prospective and current students an opportunity for active learning in the field,” said Dr. Chiquita Howard-Bostic, chair, Department of Sociology, Criminology, and Criminal Justice. “It will also yield broader partnerships between community college and university students.”

“Criminal Justice is a flagship program of the college, and we are pleased to forge a new pathway for our graduates to continue their education with a regional partner,” said Brett Gallagher, dean of Professional Studies and University Transfer. “Due to the strong relationship between Blue Ridge CTC and Shepherd University, many barriers to transfer are removed, making a transition seamless and easy for graduates to navigate.”

For more information about Shepherd’s criminal justice B.A., visit the Department of Sociology, Criminology, and Criminal Justice webpage.

For more information about Shepherd 2+2 programs, visit the 2+2 Community College Transfer Agreements webpage.

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