Graduate Alumni Spotlight
Awarded Western Oregon University 2021 Outstanding Graduate Student
My name is Katelyn Hernandez, and I am graduating from WOU in the spring of 2021 with my MA in Criminal Justice. I also got my BS from Western as well, and I majored in Criminal Justice and got a minor in Youth Crime Studies. My love for criminal justice started at a young age. My mom used to let me stay up late one night a week to watch CSI, and my love for crime shows grew from there. I also had this passion for helping people, so I thought there is no better way to combine my two favorite things than to get a degree in criminal justice.
Starting out in college I wanted to work for the Department of Human Services doing Child Welfare. Throughout school my career idea changed many times; I thought about doing juvenile probation, adult probation, a classification officer, or do some kind of correctional admin position. All I really knew was that I wanted to help people better their life. Once I graduate, I am still not sure what I want to do, but I am currently waiting to hear back from DHS Child Welfare on two positions that I have interviewed for. In the future as well, I have thought about teaching criminal justice, but I want to get some experience working in the field before doing that.
In what little free time I have between working multiple jobs, going to school, and being a Graduate Assistant with the CJ Division at WOU, I like to spend time with my family. Almost all my family lives close by, and I am the youngest of my family, so I have a lot of nieces and nephews to play with. If I am not with my family, I am most likely with my husband, dog, and cat. I am looking forward to graduating so my husband and I can come on more adventures together. I also love board games, sewing and craft projects, going to the beach, and being lazy on my couch! As much as I am excited to be graduating here soon, I am also sad that I will be leaving WOU. I had such a great time here, and I am thankful for all the people who I have meet, worked with, and learned from during my time here! I hope to take all the knowledge I have learned and apply it to something great!
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