Wednesday, February 4, 2015

From Art School to Criminal Justice Via Vol State

In 2010 Damoine Williams was living in the Nashville area working on a visual communications degree at Nossi College of Art. He was working in loss prevention with a local company when he became more interested in that line of work, and after some searching, Williams came across the criminal justice program at Vol State.

While still enrolled at Nossi, Williams began taking classes at Vol State in May of 2010 to further his career in loss prevention.

"At that point I was a junior at a different school. I couldn't just switch things. I was very dedicated. I was going to one school at night and the other school during the day, and I ended up graduating with both degrees at the same time," he said.

Following his time at Vol State, Williams moved to Ohio, where he began graduate work in business at Ohio State University, coupled graduate work in criminal justice at the University of Cincinnati. While going through graduate school, Williams began working as a loss prevention investigator for Gap Inc. before landing his current job with Target as an executive manager of asset protection. He has now taken his skills to Texas, working for Target in the San Antonio area.

Williams credits his success in both graduate school and a full-time career in his area of study to his time at Vol State.

"I went from Vol State to Ohio State, and I got up there and had some of the same core principles that I learned at Vol State. It translated very well. I've had some courses at Vol State — some of the criminology courses — that were more challenging than courses at my master level," he said.

Williams had such a love for the way a community college helps mold students he became an instructor with ITT Technical Institute last year, using much of what he learned at Vol State in his classes.

"I am such a huge advocate for them. I believe they change lives. I graduated high school with a 1.8 GPA, and now I have a master's degree. You would never know that, but once you get to a particular program that you enjoy and you thrive, you tend to do a lot better," he said.

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