Delaware Technical Community College and the Delaware State Police Academy honored the first graduating class of the new Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Option at a ceremony on May 8 at the Delaware State Police Academy in Dover.
The law enforcement option, a comprehensive associate degree program designed and offered in collaboration with the Delaware State Police Training Academy, is a two-way articulation that provides Delaware Tech students and graduates of the academy advanced standing opportunities. If accepted for employment by the Delaware State Police or a Delaware municipal policy agency, graduates of the program may be eligible to receive up to eight weeks' credit at the Delaware State Police Training Academy, thus reducing the time in the academy from 22 weeks to 14 weeks. In addition, any graduate of the academy who wants to get an AAS degree in criminal justice will only need to attend the college full time for three semesters instead of four.
Delaware Technical Community College President Dr. Orlando J. George Jr. said, “The college greatly values its ongoing partnership with the Delaware State Police. This law enforcement option is one example of our partnership and is a win-win for everyone involved. Delawareans benefit because they get a well-educated, diverse talent pool interested in law enforcement to protect our communities. The program’s graduates benefit because this option gives them the opportunity for advanced standing status in the training phases of the police academy. And existing state police academy graduates benefit by being able to come to Delaware Tech and earn an associate degree in criminal justice in a shortened time frame.”
Col. Nathaniel McQueen Jr. of the Delaware State Police agrees. “The Delaware State Police is proud of our partnership with Delaware Technical Community College and their criminal justice programs. The law enforcement option provides the opportunity for our troopers to meet and mentor young people preparing for a career in public safety. We are able to instruct their courses, familiarize them with our training academy facility and provide them with a realistic view of today’s policing profession."
The graduates received their associate in applied science degrees in Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Option in formal commencement ceremonies at Delaware Tech campuses May 20, 21 and 22. The graduates are: Ryan B. Bowman, Camden; Steven Edward Bullins, Bear; Gabrielle L. Doron, Newark; Kyle J. Figgs, Wilmington; Benjamin R. Gorgoni, Newark; Michael Charles Hilliard, Middletown; Vincent E. Margherita Jr., Middletown; Shadrack A. Minor II, Dover; Mark H. Scullion, Wilmington; Wayne E. Smiley, Newark; Robert J. Spanier Jr., Magnolia; Michele Lynn Wharton, Wilmington; Joshua D. Wootten, Wilmington; and Thomas E. Zucco, Newark.