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Alexander DahmsCriminal Justice
Where is your internship?
My current internship is with United States Probation and Pretrial Services located in Portland, Maine. In past semesters, I have interned with the South Portland Police Department and United States Marshals Service.
What do you do there?
During the fall semester while I interned for United States Probation and Pretrial Services, I had the opportunity to write pre-sentence reports. In addition, I sat in on different types of courtroom settings, such as switch court, arraignments, and trials; participated in a training seminar; shadowed probation officers within the office, and contacted other law enforcement agencies and courts to request criminal record checks. While interning with the South Portland Police Department and United States Marshals Service, I had the opportunity to go on a ride-along with a police officer, sit in on different types of courtroom settings, work on research projects, participate in sting operations, observe a deputy going through the intake process with someone in custody, and shadow officers and deputies while they carried out their tasks.
What have you learned?
I have learned that in law enforcement agencies, regardless of whether they are local, state, or federal, it takes an entire team to achieve organizational goals. The success of an agency rests on all of its members providing positive contribution. The factors of sacrifice, commitment, integrity, loyalty, teamwork, and self-discipline are cornerstones, just to name a few. Law enforcement personnel exemplify these day in and day out when they are serving their clients and carrying out their community duties.
How have your classes at St. Joe’s prepare you for your internship?
The rigor of the coursework provided me with various skill sets that I am able to use outside the classroom. The classes have shaped effective time management skills, organizational skills and interpersonal skills. The classes have presented an opportunity for me to become a critical thinker and an effective team member.
What do you like about St. Joe’s?
The small class sizes. The professors are able to know each student individually and, in turn, students are able to interact with professors and classmates more meaningfully. In addition, all of the professors bring something unique to the classroom within their respective expertise. Many have conducted scholarly studies, had their studies published, authored books, spoke at national seminars, or held occupations within their field of study.
What specifically do you like about criminal justice here at the college?
The diversity of classes associated with the criminal justice program. In addition to learning about topics associated with criminal justice, such as law and society, the criminal justice system, and criminological theory, students are also exposed to social work classes. The professors within this program have diverse backgrounds associated with police work, law, government, military, clinical social work, corrections and social movements.