School Status Granted

Black and gold graphic bar
  November 20, 2003

Margie Yu
Public Affairs Specialist 
(323) 343-3047



Cal State L.A. 
Office of Public Affairs 
(323) 343-3050 
Fax: (323) 343-6405

For immediate release:
Cal State L.A. Enhances Program in
Criminal Justice and Criminalistics

Los Angeles, CA – California State University, Los Angeles’ Department of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics has been granted the status of School. The newly reconfigured School of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics is located within the University’s College of Health and Human Services.

The formation of the School of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics represents the culmination of several years of structural reorganization, curricular revision, and new faculty recruitment.

“It places the program on equal footing with nationally recognized Schools of Criminal Justice and will enhance the program’s potential for recruiting highly qualified students and faculty, for entering the highly competitive world of external funding, and for placing students in highly sought after positions upon graduation,” explains Mitchell T. Maki, acting dean for the College of Health and Human Services.

In the fall quarter 2001, the name of the Department of Criminal Justice was changed to the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics. Deborah R. Baskin, chair of the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics for the past 8 years and a CSULA faculty member since 1995, directs the School.

Baskin noted that the previous name change reflected the “increasing interest in Criminalistics and continuing growth in the number of students seeking careers in that field.”

Baskin, an expert in gender and crime, received her B.A. from SUNY-Buffalo, M.S. from Northeastern University, and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. One of her research projects was funded by the National Institute of Drug Abuse to examine women in crime, drug markets and the community context. Her recent grant work focuses on drugs and violence, especially methamphetamines. She has been recognized with an outstanding teacher award from John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She has also co-published a book, with her husband and colleague Ira Sommers, entitled Casualties of Community Disorder.

Programs in the School of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics are designed to prepare students for successful positions in law enforcement, corrections, criminal justice planning and/or law, as well as for further study in graduate or professional schools in any of these fields. The curriculum provides intensive study in the areas of criminal justice theory, research methodology and data analysis, criminal law, organizational functioning, program planning and criminalistics. The program strives to promote understanding of key criminal, legal and scientific issues affecting contemporary urban society and respect for racial, ethnic, cultural and gender diversity.

California State University, Los Angeles, is a comprehensive university at the heart of a major metropolitan city. The 175-acre hilltop campus is located five miles east of Los Angeles’ civic and cultural center. Since 1947, Cal State L.A. has been a leader in providing quality higher education. Today, the campus comprises a faculty of internationally recognized scholars and artists, and more than 21,000 students with a wide variety of interests, ages and backgrounds that reflect the city’s dynamic mix of populations. The CSU: A leader in high-quality, accessible, student-focused higher education.

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