- Category: Volume 88 (Fall 2016 - Spring 2017)
- Published: 22 March 2017
- Written by ALEXANDRIA AFANADOR | PHOTOGRAPHY/CO-FEATURES EDITOR
Over 40 different organizations will be joining the Criminal Justice Department at their 5th annual networking fair on March 29 in an effort to help students of all majors build mentorships, secure internships, and establish professional relationships. The event will be held in Wilson Hall from 5 to 9 p.m.
Over 50 officials – 40 percent of which are University alumni – will represent career areas including: law enforcement; homeland security; postal inspection; secret service; the Fire Department City of New York (FDNY); and victim witness units from county prosecutor’s offices.
Nicholas Sewitch, an instructor of criminal justice and Internship Coordinator, organized the event. He said, “These presenters, being Monmouth alumni, prove that going into your career is possible, and it’s not just a dream--you can do it. They get to see them as their equals, as human beings. These are their role models; it’s good to present them with young and motivated people.”
The event will host all types of criminal justice-related areas of work such as members representing postal inspection, secret service, the fire department city of New York (FDNY), victim witness units from county prosecutor’s offices, along with many other dedicated individuals from the area.
“On one night, under one roof, almost every single criminal justice career is in one place, and I think that is just fascinating... all genders, sexes, all walks of life, making a difference in everyone’s lives,” Sewitch continued.
The networking event has been specifically designed to be unlike an internship or career fair, according to Sewitch, because of its interactive nature. After an opening statement, three breakout sessions will commence on the first floor of Wilson Hall. Each of the 100-level rooms will hold a different form of law enforcement, victim advocacy, security, etc. Students will be able to choose a room to listen to the presenters and have time to ask questions and mingle in between and after each session.
Dr. Beth Sanders, Chair of the Criminal Justice Department, said, “Students get to hear the reality of the jobs they look forward to getting into, rather than hearing the generic bureaucracy. You get to know the people and what they do day to day and be able to get inspired by these individuals.”
Keone Osby, an officer of the Hamilton Township Police Department and Monmouth University alumnus, said, “I think the event is extremely beneficial for students. It brings people from different aspects of law enforcement into one event where students can interact with them. The event allows students of all grade levels to speak with these different laws enforcement agencies and learn what they do. It also allows students to ask questions on what they might expect from the job or the academy.”
The criminal justice department made it a point to emphasize that the event is inclusive to all majors because, according to Sewitch, teachings from criminal justice can be applied to every single major. Sewitch explained that each year, he wants to breakdown the stereotype that this type of an event would end up being a “cop-shop,” or that the event will solely focus on law enforcement, rather than the many other areas of criminal justice.
Stephanie Vela, a junior social work student, though unable to attend the event, said, “I heard that there would be people from different organizations that relate to my major. Social work in the criminal justice system is important so I understand why it would be good for social work majors to attend [the event].”
By giving students this immersive experience of meeting some of their “role models,” as Sewitch said, students are able to not only understand their potential career fields and see just how attainable they are, but they are also able to mingle with likely employers.
Jeffrey Mass, Assistant Director of Career Services, said, “Students and alums get to meet with many, many potential employers in one place and time. This is a very efficient job search method. By meeting a hiring official in person (versus over the internet) candidates are able to showcase their drive, motivation, interpersonal and communication skills in a much more direct and effective way.”
In preparation for the event, Sewitch recommends business casual wear is more than acceptable--the event is not suit and tie formal but looking presentable is key to a good first impression. Although the event is rather relaxed and primarily focused on open conversation, rather than ‘sign up here,’ Sewitch said it is always a good idea to have a résumé handy.
Mass said, “First impressions still go a long way, so make sure to start off with a firm handshake, and maintain good eye contact.”
PHOTO COURTESY of Jenna Frain