Guardian Club Police

Guardians Club Welcomes NJ State Police Captain

The Monmouth University Guardians club hosted and welcomed NJ State Police Captain Michael Zimmerman, to discuss careers in law enforcement to students this past Wednesday in Bey Hall, Room 133.

Zimmerman is an experienced member of the NJ State Police force who currently serves as the Deputy Troop Commander in NJSP Troop C. Some of his notable experiences include conducting relief efforts in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria and helping to innovate the NJSP Regional Operations and Intelligence Center (ROIC). He has acted as Incident Commander and supervised major multi-county sides, Assistant Bureau Chief of NJSP’s Intelligence and Criminal Enterprise section, and the Executive officer at the NJ State Police Academy.

Guardians Club President and senior criminal justice student, Dally Matos, hopes to pursue a career in criminal justice, and she believes that events like these can give students perspective on law enforcement officers. “In today’s world, most students gain opinions from law enforcement based on what is on the news. Students can meet with officers face to face and get answers to their questions and see both sides of the new criminal justice debate,” she said.

Criminal Justice Department Chair and Professor, Nicholas Sewitch, explained that it is an obligation to expose students to different careers through real life experiences in order to understand what their desired job requires. “Some students have an idea of what they want to do, but they really don’t know what the career field is. We try to expose our students to a deeper look into a particular field.

Anybody can just go on the state police website and read about what it likes to be an officer, but to actually meet an individual and people who have worked in all agencies of the state police force is a fantastic opportunity.”

Junior criminal justice student, Mike Warren, believed the success of Captain Zimmerman places a direct impact on the success of criminal justice students at Monmouth. “Captain Zimmerman talked about a multitude of career paths an individual may have while pursuing a career in law enforcement. He pointed out the variety of units the state police have, and if there is a crime committed, no matter what it is they will have a task force for it. The most prominent aspect of information he shared was that law enforcement doesn’t have to require you to wear a gun, uniform, and/or badge based on the numerous jobs available,” Warren said.

Warren was inspired by Zimmerman based on his desired career path. “I have always wanted to be a state trooper, and have been to multiple career events learning the variety of units. Zimmerman helped aid me in understanding what the process may look like to apply to these units once I have gathered seniority on the job. Another way he impacted me was how he mentioned that he teaches classes at Monmouth which I never knew about and now I intend on taking his class because of how well-mannered and kind he was,” he said.

The Guardians Club is a student run club that aims to help students meet and connect professionals in the criminal justice field. During bi- weekly meetings, students have the chance to learn about different career paths that can be obtained with a Criminal Justice or Homeland Security degree, as well as ask questions that can help clarify what their career goals are. It is also an opportunity for alumni to come back and talk about their career paths.

“The Guardians Club events are beneficial for students on campus because it gives them a chance to meet with professionals in careers they are interested in. Students can come with questions and comments and be met with knowledgeable professionals ready with answers and career advice. We also don’t just serve those interested in law enforcement, we bring people from all different types of criminal justice careers, not just “gun and badge” jobs. It also serves as a great tool for networking,” said Matos

The Guardians Club has hosted other criminal justice related guests in the past, most prominently FBI agent Greg Thomas and Wall Township Police Officer Orin McKay Jr.

PHOTO TAKEN by Anthony DePrimo