Department of Criminal Justice

  • UAB cross-disciplinary efforts to shape cybercrime-fighting workforce earn NSF grant renewal

    The CyberCorps Scholarship for Service program at UAB, a collaborative effort between the Department of Computer Science and Department of Criminal Justice, has trained 23 graduate students since it began in 2017. A $300,000-plus renewal will continue the work to enhance America’s cyber-defenses.

    Read more...
  • Departments host Constitution Day experience

    The overarching theme for this year was “Public Health and the Constitution.” 13 student teams participated in the event representing 38 students.

    On Friday, September 17, 2021, in honor of Constitution Day and to fulfill the requirement of Public Law 108-447 (enacted in late 2004, which requires an educational institution receiving federal funds to hold an education program on the United States Constitution on this day for its students) the Department of Political Science and Public Administration and the Department of Criminal Justice sponsored a scavenger hunt across campus. The overarching theme for this year was “Public Health and the Constitution.” Thirteen student teams participated in the event representing 38 students.

    Students were provided questions and a resource bank ahead of time to prepare for the event. Students competed in teams of three. Stations were posted throughout campus. Participating units included:

    At each station, students were asked a specific question for which they were required to provide the correct answer to advance. Station masters initialed the team’s score card before the team could leave for the next station. To avoid guessing, students received reduced points for each attempt at the question. Students also received points for their finishing time.

    One team was a clear winner with both the number of correct answers and the fastest time. That team was Maya Crocker, Roshan Dahale, and Anthony Venesia. Two teams tied for second place and three teams tied for third place. The 17 students representing the winning teams are invited to an educational encounter with Judge Elisabeth French. Judge French will make a presentation on her path to the judiciary and will be available to answer questions from the students. All students who participated, as well as station masters, received a pocket Constitution, which contains the entire Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Each member of the first-place team will also receive a Black’s Law Dictionary. All student participants enjoyed Steele City Pops on the Campus Green after the event.

    Students commented that this event was fun, made constitutional law relevant to current events, and provided an opportunity for them to see parts of campus that they had not seen before. We also noted the significant exercise that students received in accumulating approximately 7,600 steps in completing the scavenger hunt. Professor Brandon Blankenship, director of UAB’s Pre-Law Program, stated, “I can't imagine an area of American life that is not impacted by the Constitution. It was encouraging to see students engage it in an energetic and physical way, some for the first time.”

    Stacy Moak, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration, commented, “I wanted students to see the Constitution in a practical way with a significant contemporary issue. Each of the 10 questions dealt with some issue of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as with federalism, separation of powers, and individual rights.”

    The departments intend to make this an annual event. The theme will change from year to year depending upon current events.

    Read more...
  • See “Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration” exhibition

    UAB’s Abroms-Engel Institute for the Visual Arts will host “Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration,” exploring the work of imprisoned artists and the centrality of incarceration to contemporary art and culture, on view from Sept. 17-Dec. 11.

    Read more...
  • I am Arts and Sciences: Angelo Della Manna

    When building something from the ground up, it’s valuable for the builder to be detail-oriented and driven. For Angelo Della Manna, Director of the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences, both skills came into focus during his time studying in the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Department of Criminal Justice.

    When building something from the ground up, it’s valuable for the builder to be detail-oriented and driven. For Angelo Della Manna, Director of the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences, both skills came into focus during his time studying in the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Department of Criminal Justice.

    “Having attention to detail is an extremely important skill in Forensic Science,” said Della Manna. “That is one of the best things I learned at UAB.”

    Della Manna’s journey to UAB set the tone for his future professional endeavors. In 1991, during his senior year studying chemistry at the University of Toronto, he purchased a plane ticket and traveled from Canada to the United States to attend the American Academy of Forensic Sciences conference. At that conference, he scheduled a meeting with faculty members from UAB’s Department of Criminal Justice.

    “I wanted to see, as an international student, if it was possible for me to come [to UAB],” said Della Manna.

    Della Manna met with Fred Smith, Ph.D., and Ray Liu, Ph.D. Both former faculty members were impressed with the young, analytical chemist’s drive and willingness to travel to the conference on his own dime. During the conversation, they encouraged Della Manna to take the GRE and asked him to share his transcripts.

    Soon after his journey to the conference, Della Manna was accepted into the forensic science graduate program at UAB. At the time, it was one of the few programs of its kind in the country. Della Manna took advantage of the burgeoning field of study and sought out an internship to obtain practical experience and work alongside forensic scientists.

    “You’ve got to be deliberate and intentional,” said Della Manna. “Having that internship was very valuable to me and helped teach me that skill.”

    At the time, Della Manna was also nurturing a long-distance relationship with his future wife, Debbie, who he met in Canada. Little did he know, she would later move to Birmingham to pursue her master’s in basic medical sciences, and, eventually, become a cancer researcher in the School of Medicine’s Department of Radiation Oncology.

    “Just having her in the same zip code was a win,” said Della Manna.

    After earning his M.S. in Forensic Science, Della Manna started his career as an hourly laborer position with the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences (ADFS), the second oldest crime lab system in the country. With a deep interest in forensic biology and a background in DNA techniques from UAB, he found an opportunity to build something within the ADFS.

    “I was fortunate that I had that background,” said Della Manna. “It was a technology that was just starting here in Alabama… We saw early on that DNA could be revolutionary in forensic science.”

    And it was. Through his tireless efforts, Della Manna and others built a DNA program within the ADFS, and, in turn, put Alabama on the map. In May 1994, the Alabama legislature took notice of the importance of forensic DNA testing and passed the Alabama DNA Database Law, which allowed Della Manna to move faster and help ADFS develop a national reputation.

    “The application of new technology has always been fascinating to me,” said Della Manna. “It allowed Alabama to be at the forefront, on the cutting-edge, of DNA technology.”

    Nearly 30 years later, Della Manna now serves as the Director of the ADFS and has helped build the only internationally accredited provider of forensic laboratory services in the state. Along the way, other agencies and organizations have taken notice of his knowledge and talents — including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

    “I was appointed by the FBI to the Executive Board on DNA Analysis Methods,” said Della Manna. “We helped set the national standard for forensic science.”

    The FBI also encouraged CBS’s 60 Minutes to film a segment about the ADFS’ work, an experience that Della Manna cherishes.

    Given some of ADFS’ recent statistics and outcomes, it’s no surprise why the agency values Della Manna’s expertise. Last year, his lab helped solve 806 cold cases, leading the country in the number of cases solved per capita.

    Now, Della Manna is ready to support and train the next generation of forensic scientists. He strongly advocates for work-based learning experiences and internships, and he is quick to offer advice to students who work in his office.

    “Always look for opportunities to give back,” Della Manna often tells students and interns. “As you look for your own career path, be patient. Let the body of your work develop your reputation.”

    Read more...
  • Experts say childhood trauma leads to an increase in dropout rates, arrests

    Research reveals the ripple effects of childhood trauma and school suspensions. 

    Read more...
  • Five ways to protect yourself from cyberattacks

    A UAB criminal justice researcher shares tips to prevent online identity theft.

    Read more...
  • Meet the UAB students training to stop ransomware and other digital threats

    UAB’s cybersecurity master’s program is preparing a new workforce for a booming field with ever-increasing demand and a shortage of skills. The program has a unique focus on both cyber defense and cyber investigations.

    Read more...
  • Ransomware is everywhere. Meet the UAB students training to stop this and other digital threats.

    UAB's cyber-security master’s program is preparing a new workforce for a booming field with ever-increasing demand and a shortage of skills. The program’s unique focus on both cyber defense and cyber investigations “is ideal for a student like me who wants a combination of both specialties,” said student Lindsey Sandlin.

    Read more...
  • UAB’s partnership in Nicaragua develops cross-cultural understanding and increases access to scientific research for practitioners

    With international travel on pause, a global remote internship provides a cultural experience for students and supports the efforts of Clinica Verde in Nicaragua, all from the UAB campus.

    Read more...
  • Remote partnership improves care, cultural understanding amid pandemic

    A virtual internship enables students to be part of change here and abroad and help develop better outcomes for adolescents in Nicaragua.

    Read more...
  • Celebrate 23 books authored by CAS faculty in 2020

    Writing a book isn’t easy, but faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences produced nearly two-dozen — for the second year in a row. Twenty faculty from 13 departments wrote books on police violence, John Milton, democracy in Bangladesh, addiction, postcommunist theatre and more.

    Read more...
  • Online programs at UAB continue to excel, according to U.S. News rankings

    U.S. News & World Report ranks UAB’s online undergraduate and graduate degree programs among the best in the nation.

    Read more...
  • Nov. 13, Haddin forum examines body-worn cameras and police accountability

    A UAB expert will discuss police body-worn cameras, the problematic disconnects between public expectations and reality, and ways the technology could better contribute to police reform.

    Read more...
  • Walker is dedicated to ‘building bridges within the university and the community’

    Jeff Walker, professor and chair for the Department Criminal Justice, is the winner of the 2020 Sam Brown Bridge Builder Award for his interdisciplinary, collaborative efforts across campus.

    Read more...
  • Xavier Turner and Angela Lee named Mr. and Ms. UAB 2021

    Started in 1981, the Mr. and Ms. UAB Scholarship Competition is one of UAB’s longest-standing Homecoming traditions.

    Read more...
  • UAB National Alumni Society Top 25 Excellence in Business Awards

    The 2020 UAB Excellence in Business Top 25 event was a little different this year, but the celebration, held via Zoom on Thursday, June 25, was just as meaningful as previous award ceremonies.

    The 2020 UAB Excellence in Business Top 25 event was a little different this year, but the celebration, held via Zoom on Thursday, June 25, was just as meaningful as previous award ceremonies. Nine College of Arts and Sciences alumni were honored as members of the 2020 class—we are very proud of their achievements.

    These deserving graduates were among 25 UAB alumni recognized for their success at a company they founded, owned, or managed. The UAB National Alumni Society has ranked and verified the nominated companies based on the annual growth rate for the three most recent reporting periods.

    Companies being considered for an Excellence in Business Award must meet the following criteria:

    1. The company must be owned, managed or founded by a UAB graduate (or group of graduates) who meets one of the following:
      • Owned 50 percent or more of the company during the most recent eligible period.
      • Served on the most senior/division leadership team (chairman, CEO, president, partner, vice president, broker, etc.) during the eligible period.
    2. The company has been in operation for a minimum of three years prior to December 31, 2019.
    3. The company has verifiable revenues of at least $150,000 for its most recent 12-month reporting period.

    Congratulations to our deserving graduates!

    ADAM ALDRICH

    Aldrich is the president and co-founder of Airship, a software development firm in Birmingham. Airship deploys a wide array of technologies to service clients in 11 states and across a range of industries, including healthcare, construction, retail, insurance, real estate, non-profit, and fitness. Aldrich graduated with a B.S. in computer and information sciences in 2008.

    JOSHUA BAKER

    Baker is the owner and managing director of Baker Camp Arnold Capital Management, a premier, full-service financial advisory firm located in Hoover, Alabama, with a nationwide presence. The firm offers clients concierge-quality advisory and planning services customized for their individual needs and goals. Its approach is to centralize clients’ diverse financial strategies and life plans to provide a coordinated, efficient, and effective road map for financial security. Baker graduated with a B.A. in history in 2004.


    JOHN BURDETT

    Burdett graduated with a B.S. in computer and information sciences in 2000. Today he is the CEO of Fast Slow Motion, which offers expert Salesforce guidance for growing businesses. The company focuses on implementing Salesforce as a platform to run businesses so companies can focus on growth—not managing technology or worrying about operations. Its team has expertise across a wide range of businesses and industries.

    DAVID FORRESTALL

    Forestall founded SecurIT360 in 2009. The full-service, cybersecurity and compliance consulting firm has grown consistently year after year. With offices in Chicago, Illinois, and Birmingham, SecurIT360 has partnered with hundreds of organizations nationwide and abroad to measure, monitor, and respond to cyber risk. Forrestall graduated with a B.S. in physics in 1996.


    JOE MALUFF

    Maluff graduated with a B.S. in Psychology in 1996. Today, he is an owner of Full Moon Bar-B-Que, one of the Southeast’s most popular restaurants. Joe and his brother David bought the original restaurant and have grown the business while still maintaining the landmark restaurant’s family feel. Full Moon employs 345 people across Alabama.

    BRADY McLAUGHLIN

    McLaughlin is CEO of Trio Safety CPR+AED, a family of four life-saving brands designed to prepare the general public to save lives with AEDs, CPR, first-aid training, and bleeding control kits. They employ 13 team members in Birmingham and have nearly 40 contractors nationwide. McLaughlin graduated in 2009 with a degree in Communication Studies.


    CHRISTINA SMITH

    Smith graduated in 2009 with a Masters in Public Administration, and today she is the owner and principal of Smith Strategies Association Management, which provides resources to help member associations succeed. Smith began in 2016 with the Alabama chapter of the American College of Cardiology. Four years later, the company manages seven membership associations that collectively have more than 3,500 members and a budget of more than $7 million.

    CORY WAGGONER

    Waggoner is CEO of Higher Yields Consulting, a cannabis consulting firm located in Denver, Colorado. Higher Yields provides assistance for businesses seeking guidance and advice in this highly competitive industry. The company provides government support, compliance training, garden management, commercial facility build and design services, branding, and business development services. Waggoner graduated with a B.S. in Justice Sciences in 2009


    JAMES WU

    Wu is Co-Founder and CEO of DeepMap, which has a goal to provide the world’s best HD mapping and localization services for autonomous vehicles and smart cities. Founded in 2016, DeepMap employs about 140 people, including a growing team of experienced engineers and product visionaries. It partners with global companies including Ford, Honda, SAIC Motor, Bosch, Daimler, and Einride. Wu graduated with an M.S. in computer and information sciences in 2001 and a Ph.D. in 2003.

    Read more...
  • Journey to Attorney: Pre-law summer camp for high school students

    Pre-law camp teaches high school students how to disagree.

    Read more...
  • UAB hosts “Policing, Citizen Activism and Human Rights” on Facebook Live, June 11

    Join UAB’s Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for a Facebook Live panel discussion on how policing, citizen activism and human rights all play a role during unprecedented times.

    Read more...
  • Honoring the 2020 winners of Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching

    Congratulations to Drs. Danny Siegel (English), Renato Camata (Physics), and Jason Linville (Criminal Justice)
    From left: Dr. Renato Camata, Dr. Danny Siegel, and Dr. Jason Linville.

    The Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching recognizes full-time regular faculty members of College of Arts and Sciences who have demonstrated exceptional accomplishments in teaching. The individual must have held faculty status at UAB for a minimum of three years and may receive the award only once in any three-year period. The 2020 winners were chosen from these three distinctive areas and departments:

    • Arts and Humanities: Art and Art History, Music, Theatre, English, Foreign Languages, History, and Philosophy
    • Natural Sciences and Mathematics: Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Physics, and Mathematics
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences: African American Studies, Anthropology, Communication Studies, Criminal Justice, Political Science and Public Administration, Psychology, Social Work, and Sociology

    The awards were based outstanding accomplishments in teaching as demonstrated by criteria including:

    • Broad, thorough knowledge of the subject area and the ability to effectively convey difficult concepts to students.
    • Exemplary classroom instruction as evidenced by student and peer evaluation.
    • Fairness, open-mindedness, and accessibility to students in and out of the classroom setting.
    • Effective use of innovative teaching methods and assurance that his/her courses stay abreast of current theory and use of modern technology.
    • Ability to infuse students with a commitment to life-long learning and professional development.

    The three winners, who were selected by the CAS President's Award for Excellence in Teaching Committee, will be considered for the final College of Arts and Sciences nominee for the President's Award of Excellence in Teaching. 

    Arts and Humanities: Dr. Danny Siegel, Associate Professor, Director of Undergraduate Studies, Department of English

    Natural Sciences and Mathematics: Dr. Renato Camata, Associate Professor, Undergraduate Program Director, Department of Physics

    Social and Behavioral Sciences: Dr. Jason Linville, Teaching Assistant Professor, Department of Criminal Justice

    Read more...
  • Catch up on your reading with one of these 13 books authored by CAS faculty

    Do you have more time on your hands while social-distancing? Faculty and staff in the College of Arts and Sciences published 13 books in 2019 on subjects ranging from lifestyles and aging to advancements in satellite archaeology.

    Read more...