The University of Missouri-Kansas City recently celebrated the completion of the Student Academy with the FBI. More than 30 students from across the university were recognized for their participation and commitment to the Student Academy over the past year.
Special Agent in Charge of the Kansas City FBI Division Darrin Jones and Interim Chancellor and Provost Barbara Bichelmeyer presented certificates of completion to the students who attended six or more sessions of UMKC Student Academy. The sessions covered topics such as hostage negotiations, legal overview, violent crimes, terrorism, behavioral analysis and more.
“This year was a successful year for our second class of participants, and I am confident this program will continue to grow as time goes on,” Bichelmeyer said.
“Thank you for the investment you made,” Jones said in his opening remarks. “This program is yours.”
In the fall of 2016, UMKC became one of the first universities in the country to offer such a program, which is modeled after the FBI’s Citizens’ Academy. This student-led initiative has a steering committee of students from across the university who decide on topics that appeal to a wide and interdisciplinary audience. Students of all majors can attend the non-credit professional development academy at no charge.
Caroline Ross started attending the seminars last year and has been on the steering committee since December of 2016. Ross will graduate this month with a degree in criminal justice and political science and will start at the UMKC School of Law in the fall. She will remain on the steering committee and is excited about the new topics the committee has chosen.
“The goal of the Student Academy is to give students an inside look at what the FBI actually does,” Ross said. “I think the seminars are very interesting, and I love getting to work so closely with the FBI. It is also a good way for the FBI to find students who may want to work for them in the future and for students who think they may want to work for the FBI in the future to get their questions answered and to see what it actually takes to be an agent.”
Ross said she’s still thinking about her future, but working for the FBI is definitely on her radar. An internship with the FBI while in law school is a consideration. After law school and working for a while, Ross would like to be a judge. “My ultimate goal is to become a Supreme Court Justice, but we will see where life takes me. I don’t know exactly where I want to end up in the future.”
The Student Academy is supported and sponsored by the College of Arts & Sciences, Honor’s College, Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology and the Chancellor’s Office. To get involved with the planning committee, contact Sarah Towakoli, email@example.com or Ken Novak, Ph.D., criminal justice and criminology professor, NovakK@umkc.edu.