[Chicago-Jefferson Park, IL] Two veteran law enforcement officials recently spoke at a free seminar at Northwestern College about careers in criminal justice and what it takes for others to enter into the field. Anthony (Tony) Caruthers, Commander & Executive Officer of Area Central for the Chicago Police Department (retired) and Sergeant Don Flowers, Investigations Division of the Aurora Police Department, were the featured speakers at the event. This was the second seminar presented by Northwestern College for interested members of the community in addition to its students. The College has been presenting these seminars as part of its continuing efforts to serve as a resource to local communities that are striving to move residents off the unemployment rolls and into good paying jobs and careers. This seminar was presented at the College’s Chicago Campus in Jefferson Park, located at 4811 N. Milwaukee Avenue. It was well attended by students and members of the public.
Both Commander Caruthers and Sergeant Flowers regaled the crowd with stories of their many experiences on crime scenes, solving cases, interviewing suspects and the adrenaline experiences of their jobs, but also noted the mundane tasks such as report writing, pouring through files and hours and hours of uneventful surveillance. They explained to the interested audience that you can’t have the excitement without the hours of effort and tedious tasks necessary to properly build a case. Further, they noted that while not all departments require an Associate Degree in, for example, Criminal Justice, many will give preferred points to candidates that have such a degree or hours earned at a college.
Commander Caruthers, following a long and distinguished career, explained that a career in law enforcement is for those who have a passion to help their community and their families. It takes commitment, extreme focus, and a continuing desire to learn. Every day on the job, he explained, you learn something.
Sergeant Flowers conveyed the same sentiments. Despite his 19 year career - 3 ½ years with the Kendall County Sheriff’s Office and nearly 16 years at the Aurora Police Department – officers are required to engage in continuing education while on the force. He has watched the Aurora Police Department evolve over his tenure, which has created a need to obtain knowledge in the classroom, through interdepartmental teamwork, and via teamwork with other law enforcement agencies in order for him to effectively do to his job. He also pointed out the increasing impact that women are having on the force and in other law enforcement agencies, negating the old stereotypes and opening up women to tremendous careers in law enforcement today.
Both Commander Caruthers and Sergeant Flowers agreed that the old mindset in law enforcement has evolved. Diplomacy now trumps. While Sergeant Flowers teaches special defense tactics and has had to use force, including the use of weapons during his career, he would much rather talk through a situation than to fight with someone. Unfortunately, he explained, when a conflict gets physical, everyone gets hurt in the end, and so using one’s mind becomes that much more valuable in trying to resolve conflicts. Consequently, exercising the mind and learning through education as well as experience helps to build a stronger and more effective law enforcement career.
This Criminal Justice seminar was geared towards those entering the job market, those interested in a career change, and those interested in seeking higher education to pursue a career in law enforcement. Northwestern College is committed to educating students beyond just the use of textbooks, but instead by introducing careers via the real world experiences of industry leaders. This seminar featuring seasoned law enforcement veterans demonstrated that commitment.
Anyone interested in more information about the criminal justice seminar or any additional seminars Northwestern College may be hosting in the future can contact Scott Kawall at 773-628-0131 or via email at email@example.com.
About Northwestern College:
Northwestern College (NC) is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, http://www.ncahlc.org. The college offers focused career-oriented associate degree and certificate programs with flexible schedules and a supportive faculty. Day, evening, weekend, online classes and online programs are available. More information can be found at www.northwesterncollege.edu or by calling toll-free (888) 205-2283.