Criminal Justice: Working to Learn

It looks as if Chief Vince Alfano of the Bolton Police Department has decided to add some more Nichols talent to his team. On Wednesday December 5th, Vince Alfano returned to Nichols College to scout out some possible new interns in Professor Charbonneau’s 10:50 am class. One lucky student, Pat Derosa, made the cut as he got to talk separately with the Chief after class about an internship for next semester.

Pat took the necessary steps in order to pursue an internship and that first step involved meeting with Professor Charbonneau, discussing his future goals. Professor Charbonneau said, “I thought about what would be a good fit for Pat, the area where he lived, where his interests would lie, and right away I thought of Bolton Police Chief Alfano.” The internship process may be difficult but the results have been remarkable.The Chief made it clear that he loves hiring Nichols students. There have been two other interns in the past that have worked with the Bolton Police Department and according to the Chief, “I enjoyed working with them. They were a huge benefit to my department.” The Chief seems to be very impressed with Nichols students and admits that when the internships are completed, he and his staff wish they could remain.

The chief explained just how important an internship is to an employer looking at a resume. “If I see an internship on there, it tells me a couple things. One, the candidate didn’t just sit around in college and go to classes and take tests.They actually did more than they had to, and they actually got out into the field and had real world practical experience.”

Nichols has had great success at getting Criminal Justice majors out in the field and preparing them for their future careers. This year alone Professor Charbonneau has given twenty-five students help and guidance in getting an internship. Overall each year, Professor Charbonneau has about eighty percent of her students involved in an internship. Nichols is great at preparing students to dress in the business world, and in this case it really shows that it makes a difference. Commenting on Pat’s actual interview the Chief noted Pat’s professional appearance and acknowledged that it was a leg up in the hiring process.

Of course, classroom knowledge matters too. The Chief explained that “you could be the best police officer in the world, but if you can’t write effective reports, or if you can’t communicate well with people, or you can’t go into a classroom setting in a school and talk to the students, then you’re not going to be as effective and efficient as a police officer as you could be.” That’s just why the chief is so impressed with the Criminal Justice program here at Nichols.

Criminal Justice majors also have amazing drive to “protect and serve,” and Pat made it clear that he has others’ best interest at heart when he said, “I’ve always wanted to help people more than make a really good living, and when I heard that Nichols College offers internships, that was one of the aspects I saw that I wanted to go to.”

Despite what you see in the media, “being a police officer isn’t what you see on TV,” says Chief Alfano. The Chief stresses how he wants the internship to be fun and rewarding for Pat, who will be able to meet everyone in the town and shadow everything the Chief does. The internship is going to be a great opportunity not just for Pat, but for the Chief as well, who explained that the best way to learn is to teach.

It’s safe to say that Nichols prepares its students for the real world, and potential employers appreciate that aspect of a Nichols education. As the Chief said, “It’s a win win for everybody.” We will revisit Pat during his internship, to see the progression.

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