Former Pittsburgh Police Sergeant, Chaplain Mildred Johnson Builds on Criminal Justice Experience in Master's Program Student Profile
Rev. Dr. Mildred Johnson
Meet Mildred Johnson '22
- Job Title & Employer
- Associate Professor of Criminal Justice, Geneva College
- Job Title & Employer
- National Trainer, Georgetown University Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement (ABLE)
- Criminal Justice Administration-M.S.
- Pittsburgh, Pa.; Brashear High School
- Now Living In
- Oakdale, Pa.
- Hobbies & Interests
Walking, working out at the gym, reading, listening to music, cleaning, encouraging others and mentoring
"Point Park's criminal justice administration program prepares any professional already in the field to reach greater heights in criminal justice leadership and administration, while also preparing someone who might be changing careers to enter the criminal justice field for the first time. The professors are a great inspiration and attraction for the program. They demand the best from you as a student, but they are also caring, encouraging and supportive."
Describe your professional background in law enforcement.
I started my career in the field of criminal justice as a police officer with the City of Pittsburgh Bureau of Police. I spent 15 years with the department as a patrol officer, academy instructor, chaplain, community relations officer and finally as a sergeant. Seven of those years were spent at the Zone Five precinct in East Liberty where I learned so much about serving my country and my community. Even though I left the bureau as a police sergeant, I stayed active as a police chaplain and I enjoy the interaction that this role provides me to get involved in the lives of our officers.
I had the opportunity to touch so many lives, but I am most thankful to God for the lives that touched mine. Each day that I put on my uniform, I made a promise to God and myself to try to leave those that I encountered better than I found them. That wasn’t always possible because some of my encounters meant arresting someone and giving them time out from society, but even in those moments, I always tried my best to treat people with the utmost dignity and respect.
Why did you enroll in Point Park’s Criminal Justice Administration program?
I was attracted to the program because of the courses, the cohort style of learning and the face-to-face learning interactions in the classroom. Though I had already earned my Doctor of Strategic Leadership, Point Park's program was just what I wanted and needed to accomplish my plan of obtaining my master’s degree in criminal justice. I already had the life experience, but I wanted to make sure I had the academic credentials as well. I looked at several other colleges and universities, but Point Park was at the top of the list because of its location in Downtown Pittsburgh, along with the curriculum and the professors who all have a plethora of experience in the field of criminal justice.
How has the program impacted you so far, and how are you applying its lessons to your career?
I am already using what I am learning as a student to enhance my role as a professor, advisor and mentor at Geneva College. The awesome professors at Point Park have taught me so much thus far in the field of criminal justice, while providing me with many new opportunities to learn and grow. Professors Richard A. Linzer, J.D., Carol Trent, Ph.D., and Judith Cohen, J.D., Ph.D., are the best. They all bring a lot of wisdom, knowledge and personal experience to the classroom.
I share my growth with my students by providing them with enhanced knowledge, but my connection with Point Park also provides a direct connection for my students who are interested in graduate school. I have already started focusing on my students who are interested in graduate school by inviting Professor Linzer to speak with them.
What value do you see in Point Park’s program?
The class meeting times are great for professionals already in the field because the professors are very supportive with students bringing their life experiences into the classroom. The class times also work well for those who are parents because it is one day a week for a year, which doesn’t take parents away from their busy lifestyle.
Point Park's criminal justice administration program prepares any professional already in the field to reach greater heights in criminal justice leadership and administration, while also preparing someone who might be changing careers to enter the criminal justice field for the first time. The professors are a great inspiration and attraction for the program. They demand the best from you as a student, but they are also caring, encouraging and supportive. The program is intense and challenging, but I am amazed at how much I have learned and grown since I started. What I have learned so far has helped me to improve in my current role as a professor.
What are your goals after completing your degree?
I plan to continue teaching in the field of criminal justice while continuing my work with Georgetown University as a national instructor with the Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement Officers Program (ABLE). I would also like to explore the possibility of teaching as an adjunct or part-time instructor with a few other colleges or universities.
More About: School of Arts and Sciences, M.S. in criminal justice administration, graduate programs, criminal justice, faculty