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Author Topic: Wanting some advice  (Read 17044 times)

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Offline Doug

  • AFTE Friend
  • Posts: 2
Wanting some advice
« on: May 06, 2010, 10:13:00 AM »
Hello,
  I would like some advice on how to have a chance in becoming a firearms examiner trainee.  I`m currently working to receive a BS in criminal justice, and I have a degree in biotechnology and lab experience. Also, I have over 30hrs in natural science courses and forensic courses.  I guess my basic question is; Do I have a chance with a criminal justice degree?
           

                               
                                   

Offline Tori Kujala

  • AFTE Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 736
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanting some advice
« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2010, 12:13:15 PM »
Doug,

There are plenty of agencies that will train you, either by sending you to the National Firearms Academy or in-house training programs.  When will you be getting your degree?  The Georgia Bureau of Investigation takes applications and will keep it on file for openings.   They used to train in-house when I worked for them.  I think they have openings currently but I am not sure.

Tori
Tori Kujala
Forensic Firearm Consultants, LLC
8505 Prairie Rose Lane
Fort Worth, TX  76123
817-528-5520

Offline Doug

  • AFTE Friend
  • Posts: 2
Re: Wanting some advice
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2010, 08:32:53 PM »
Thank you Tori for the reply,

 Is their a certain age limit for an agency to send someone to the academy?  I`m getting very discouraged, and at my age I am reconsidering even continuing in school.  Why have a student loan to pay back until I`m 60 and not even be considered for a job I`m interested in.  To answer your question; I have about 9 months to receive the degree.

Thank you very much for your advice,
           Doug

Offline Tori Kujala

  • AFTE Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 736
  • Gender: Female
Re: Wanting some advice
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2010, 08:30:52 AM »
I'm not aware of an age restriction.  I didn't get into the field until I was...well, later in life.   ;)

Tori
Tori Kujala
Forensic Firearm Consultants, LLC
8505 Prairie Rose Lane
Fort Worth, TX  76123
817-528-5520

Offline Scott Doyle

  • AFTE Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1929
  • Gender: Male
    • An Introduction to Forensic Firearms Identification
Re: Wanting some advice
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2010, 09:04:19 AM »
Doug,

The degree program you are in will qualify you for a job as a firearm and toolmark examiner in a lot of government labs.

There's a push in a lot of labs to require Forensic Science or other science degrees but for now you'll find a lot of options with your background.  The fact that you do have a lot of science/lab course work will help.

There is no age limit for the NFEA class so don't worry about that. 

If you are that close to finishing school I would recommend you stick it out.  Try to find an internship in a local Forensic Lab if possible. 

Also, if you can, try to attend one of the AFTE Training Seminars.  You will be able to network with several hundred examiners from every corner of the country.  The next meeting is next year in Chicago.

Good luck!

Offline Patrick McLaughlin

  • AFTE Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 63
  • Gender: Male
Re: Wanting some advice
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2010, 11:55:00 AM »
Doug,

I agree with all the advice given by Scott and Tori.  I would just add one thing.  Once you graduate take almost any job in forensics you can get.  I only say this because you may have to wait for an opening in a firearms section and working in any section of a forensics lab will give good experience in techniques you’re going to need.  This is how I started out in forensics and then about a year later there was an opening in the firearms section. 
Also, I started out in the field rather late in life and will also be paying off student loans till I die, but it is worth it and no one as far as I can tell holds age against you.

Pat

 

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