Bridging Perspectives: Law Enforcement and Students

#HumankindAlliance#ThankfulThursday would like to commend #Keystone College for offering a project-based course, “Bridging Perspectives: Critical Conversations for Students and Police,” to give students and members of the #law enforcement #community a chance to meet in a socially distant classroom to engage in conversations related to #social, #racial and #criminal justice issues. The class was created by the #International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) to help #criminal justice students and #law enforcement officers understand each other’s perspectives.

#Keystone College has invited members of the #local law enforcement #community to enroll in the course at no cost in the form of a scholarship in recognition of their #service to the #community. In addition, the officers will receive three college credits. Associate Professor Stacey Wyland, who will teach the class, discovered the course offering through the #IACP in August 2020.

According to the IACP, the course is built around three core objectives for the students and police:

  • Use tools to constructively engage in difficult conversations.
  • Build a mutual understanding of everyone’s different perspectives and narratives on #community and #police issues, especially as it relates to #policing in local #communities.
  • Build a vision for a shared future with stronger #community-police relationships.

#Keystone College criminal justice instructor Ray Hayes, a former state police officer was involved in development of the course. He hopes the students will learn the importance of understanding the #communities that officers serve. He called the course unique in that it gets #police and #students learning together both in the classroom and in the #community.

“To have success in terms of #policing, you have to understand all the different cultural demographics and needs within the #community. We really look at our #students as #law enforcement #leaders of tomorrow and that we hope that they grow and evolve to meet a lot of the changes occurring in the #communities they serve,” said Instructor Hayes.

“By the end of the course, I hope that moving forward that both sides have a shared vision for what needs to happen in the future to make #policing more #community-oriented,” said Associate Professor Wyland.