Former FBI Agent Teaches NECC Students
After 22 years with the FBI, Jay White said it just seemed logical to pass along his knowledge and experience. Fortunately, Northern Essex criminal justice students are the lucky recipients.
White, who is also an attorney, has been teaching Introduction to Criminal Justice and Criminal Law at Northern Essex for 10 years. He particularly enjoys teaching the introduction course since it often helps students decide whether or not to pursue a career in criminal justice.
Interestingly, criminal justice was not White’s first career choice. With a bachelor’s in history and a minor in Russian Area Studies from Pennsylvania State University, White earned his juris doctorate at the University of Baltimore School of Law. He practiced law for two years before joining the FBI as a Special Agent. In addition, White served in the U.S. Army Reserves for more than three years both active and reserve.
While criminal justice may not be everyone’s career path, White says elements of the discipline touch everyone’s lives every day.
“You cannot watch or read the latest news stories without being exposed to the criminal justice system. New laws, gripping stories, raging controversies, and issues of great national importance are all there every day,” he said. “I like to bring these cutting edge stories into the classroom and apply them to the course content. I like to think this keeps the material fresh, interesting, and relevant.”
Since crime and security are priority issues in this country, White said, that translates into job creation.
“Growth in public police agencies is expected to be around 2.8* per year while growth in private security is expected to be around 4* per year,” he noted. “Both of these figures translate into careers.”
White enjoys working with NECC’s criminal justice students and finds their energy and curiosity keep him engaged which is impressive for a career FBI agent who said every day as an agent brought its challenges.
“No two cases were ever the same. I needed to keep abreast of the constant changes in methods and technologies used, not only by law enforcement, but by criminals and terrorists too.”
So what makes a strong candidate for the criminal justice field?
“Success in the criminal justice field requires you to constantly question everything you observe, everything you are told, and everything you assume.”