Dickinson State University alum Detective Kylan Klauzer will soon return to campus, not as a student but as an instructor.
Klauzer, who graduated from DSU in 2005 with a political science degree, will use his experience as a detective for the Dickinson Police Department to teach ethics in the second year of the university's criminal justice program.
"The Dickinson Police Department has been very positive, and they feel the need for this and have supported us. I know they’re very happy with the establishment of this program here," said Steven Doherty, chair of the department of social sciences.
Klauzer has over 14 years of experience with the Dickinson Police Department and is a graduate of the FBI’s National Academy Program. He has served on the region's SWAT team and taught use of force training for the department.
Klauzer isn't the first from DPD to teach a course. Last school year, Capt. David Wilkie taught a class in criminal investigations.
"They’re more familiar with some of the specifics of police work, and that’s why it’s great to combine the broader and more academic approach to criminal justice, along with a more applied number of courses that will instantly translate into something that will work on the job site," Doherty said.
Klauzer sees DPD's involvement in the program as a potential benefit for the department, also.
"I think for us it’s an opportunity for the department to market ourselves as well. To be able to get out there and show these kids … here’s the Dickinson Police Department and all the good things that we can offer and look what you can do," he said. "This program and our involvement, I think the two things together are going to be really helpful for the future in recruiting good, quality applicants."
Doherty said the program will help meet a need in the community.
"We’ve had - we’re in a little burp right now - a very fast growing community with more economic activity and more people … With that always there is a need for criminal justice personnel. There’s a great demand in this part of the state for law enforcement by state and local government entities, city and county, and we’re so happy we’ll be able to meet that particular need in this section of the state," he said.
Prior to last school year, DSU was offering some courses in criminal justice, but they were part of a broader social science degree.
"We actually had a composite social science track in criminal justice, which taught some of the same courses and some of the same information, but this one (has a) clear indication to anyone who’s going to be looking at our graduates that this person is criminal justice, someone who’s trained and ready," Doherty said.
Karen Hale Lewis is associate professor of sociology at the university.
"I know that students had a lot of interest and they were requesting the specific degree for their transcripts, for their particular professions, as opposed to kind of a more general based social science degree with a focus or emphasis on criminal justice," she said.
Although many of the courses are the same, they've added some new ones as well, including the course in ethics that Klauzer will be teaching.