Q. Why do you study criminal justice?
A. My research areas of expertise are cybercrime and corrections. I enjoy not only investigating the predictors of criminal activity for individuals, but more importantly using those findings to create educational programs and provide resources to assist individuals in breaking free of that deviant lifestyle. Furthermore, I truly enjoy watching my students get excited about criminal justice and going to fruitful careers of making a difference in the field.
Q. How do you incorporate your research into your teaching?
A. I will often use examples of contemporary research in my courses to demonstrate how research influences public policy and governmental decision-making. In addition, I will discuss the effect of good and bad research on public perception of crime.
Q. Why did you choose to study cybercrime and corrections specifically? What sparked your interest and what has kept it going?
A. My mentor, George Higgins, asked me to participate in a cybercrime study as an undergraduate and that sparked my interest. We have continued a fantastic research relationship in the field. My interest in corrections also sparked as an undergraduate, but truly was fueled when I worked on a co-editor project with Tammy Castle regarding relationships in prison. Since that time, I have dedicated a lot of time examining facets of the corrections system.
Q. You said you enjoy using your findings to create education programs and provide resources to assist individuals in breaking from a deviant lifestyle. Can you explain this further?
A. I have performed tutorial and educational workshops for parents and organizations on the dangers of online victimization and predatory behavior. I have used some of this information in the classroom, but also in workshops for outside entities.
Q. Are there any research findings that changed your perspective or surprised you?
A. I have acquired a lot of knowledge regarding the offending differences between men and women, some of which is surprising. Many people assume that females are docile creatures unable to participate in evil behaviors, but this is certainly untrue.