Tania Castillo will receive a Bachelor of Science in Criminology with a law enforcement option. She enrolled at Fresno State as a transfer student from Fresno City College in the spring of 2017. Castillo was inducted into the Criminology Honors Program, she volunteers and holds a seat in the Citizens’ Public Safety Advisory Board, works with Mayor Lee Brand and interns with the Court Services – Investigations Unit from Juvenile Probation in Fresno County.
“I chose this field because I have always aspired to serve and give back to the community and I see this as a platform that would allow me to do just this.”
Castillo shared her academic experience at Fresno State in a Q&A
What is your career goal?
My ultimate career goal is to become a criminology professor at a university. However, prior to this I would like to gain field experience by working at a federal agency and would also like to conduct research.
What do you think about the College of Social Sciences (COSS) and our professors?
As part of the Law Enforcement Option, I was able to meet great instructors that made me appreciative of the diversity in backgrounds and expertise every faculty member from the criminology department has. I can confidently say that my academic success has relied on the connections I have made with the department and the COSS in general.
What was a challenge you experienced as a student?
As a student who moved to the U.S. almost 6 years ago (and simultaneously learned english), I can confidently say that time at Fresno State helped me reach my ever-growing potential as a student. In part, this was done by having the opportunity to address areas that I needed to improve on and having access to on-campus resources to do so.
What is your most memorable experience at Fresno State?
My most memorable experience at Fresno State was the participation in the induction ceremony for the Criminology Honors Program. This was a moment of great recognition that gave me the opportunity to gain trust in myself and where my efforts felt validated. In addition to this, some highlights of the opportunities that I got while being a student at Fresno State include: the opportunity to serve as a volunteer (presently holding a seat) at the Citizens’ Public Safety Advisory Board, serving at the pleasure of Mayor Lee Brand and doing my internship with the Court Services – Investigations Unit from Juvenile Probation with the Fresno County. Truly, having these opportunities presented to me through school was an incredible learning experience.
How do you feel about being recognized as an outstanding student?
I feel honored about getting this recognition. I understand that these are hard times and I would like for everyone to know that all of their struggles will be worth it in the end. Every time one gets a recognition, there is a whole support system behind those achievements and a whole group of individuals that are represented through those that get the opportunity to be acknowledged.
How do you think COSS prepared you for the future?
The criminology department, along with the COSS advisors and the EOP program have helped prepare me for the future in great ways. As I plan to continue with my education, I know that the tools I now have thanks to all of the support I got while being an undergraduate student will continue to be of great use.
What do you see yourself doing in 10 years?
I hope to have Ph.D., field and research experience, a couple of articles published, and looking to find a job at a university as a criminology professor.
What is your advice for other students?
The most valuable advice to students would be to ask help every time they need it and get as connected to campus as they can. I never found it useful to not know what were the resources we have on campus, so I decided to ask as many questions as I needed because that also allowed me to help others!
Castillo would like to thank her support system which includes her parents, family, boyfriend, and friends.
“Thank you for always having my back and believing in me through this exciting journey. To the criminology department and all of the professors that have worked with me in and outside of class, thank you. Also, shout out to Alpha Phi Sigma and our advisors for letting me be their secretary and for all of the fun moments we’ve shared. Special thanks to my coordinator and professors who have been a part of the Criminology Honors Program with my cohort. Thank you for always challenging and encouraging us to do our best. In this journey, I’ve learned so much more than what’s related to my major, you have all impacted my life in the best possible way!”