School of Liberal Arts & Sciences Students, Students

Major: Criminal Justice 

Hometown: Margate City, New Jersey

High School: Atlantic County Institute of Technology

How did you decide to come to Cairn?
I heard about Cairn from a friend. After high school, I went to community college, and around that time I got saved. As a new Christian, I really had a passion to learn more about the Word. So, I applied to Cairn never having stepped foot on campus. After a year of community college, I ended up just taking the plunge and coming here. There was something so inviting and welcoming about Cairn, the things my friend told me about it. It was just like, “This is where I need to be. This is my next step.”

What elements of your Cairn experience have stood out?
The culture that staff and administration bring is one of my favorite parts. I think the integrity of the school really stands out. You see it in leadership, like President Williams, all the way down to the people who work in different offices, like business services. You can tell the heart of Cairn is for the Lord and being a Christian that’s “walking a different path.” It’s a cliché here, but I think that slogan hits the nail on the head.

Who’s a professor that has influenced you?
I work in the School of Divinity, so I’m around those professors all the time. One person in particular that I admire is Dr. Plummer. He is very Christlike, and no matter what he’s doing he will stop and talk to you. If you have a question or concern, he will take the time to have a full-on conversation with you. You walk away feeling like you really matter to him. And that’s not only specific to Dr. Plummer, but all of these professors put their heart and soul into the people that they work with and teach, and even the people they don’t teach, the people they see in the hallway.

What made you decide on Cairn’s Criminal Justice program?
I was very much at a crossroads with what I wanted to do educationally. I came to study pastoral ministry, by my sophomore year, I decided to make a change. I considered social work and didn’t even realize we had a criminal justice program. But when I found that out, I was like, “This is what I want to do.” I have a heart for anti-human trafficking work and I wanted to be proactive, doing something to prevent it, rather than working with people after the fact. I switched to Criminal Justice, and I’m loving it.

What do you want to do with your degree once you graduate?
I’m considering some options. I’ve actually looked at the Applied Behavioral Analysis program in Cairn’s School of Education. It’s a behavioral therapy kind of program, and I’m considering ways that skill would be helpful in a prison system or maybe even with people who experienced human trafficking. That’s the beauty of the criminal justice program: it’s so adaptable. You could take it into the education field, a science track, you can go into forensic science, forensic psychology, law enforcement. Many different things.

What has it been like working with the Criminal Justice department chair, Mark Gaspar?
Oh, he is like the shepherd of the program. He oversees everything, I don’t know where to begin. He works on curriculum, he’s everyone’s advisor. He’s very intentional about meeting with students and helping us know and achieve our goals. He’s really just a guide and sage to all of us in the program.

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