Category Archives: Programs

Need-based scholarships available for 2011 NIJ Conference

NIJ is offering a small number of need-based scholarships to attend the 2011 NIJ Conference. The conference itself is free; the scholarships cover accommodations at the conference hotel and provide a $150 per diem. (Recipient must provide travel to and from the conference.)

Criteria: Applicant must be a public or non-profit sector, criminal justice researcher or practitioner in one of the following areas:

  • Corrections
  • Courts
  • Crime prevention
  • Forensics
  • Law enforcement
  • Science and technology
  • Victim advocacy

NOTE: Current NIJ grantees and past scholarship winners are not eligible.

How to Apply:  

1.    Write up to 200 words telling NIJ how you expect the conference to benefit your organization’s mission.

2.    Ask your supervisor to write a letter approving your attendance.

  • The letter must be submitted on your organization’s letterhead.
  • The letter must affirm that your organization’s travel funds are limited.

3.    Email the required documents to nijscholarships@ncjrs.gov or fax it to 301–519–5212 no later than 5:00 pm Eastern time on Friday, March 18, 2011.

NFSTC receives $12 Million in awards for forensic science initiatives

The National Forensic Science Technology Center (NFSTC) announced today that it received more than $12 million in Fiscal Year 2010 grants and cooperative agreements from the Department of Justice for new and continuing initiatives and programs in forensic science. The funding will expand training, technology assistance and the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs) to improve forensic science across the country.

NFSTC is partnering with the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) to continue the Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE), the NamUs program, and forensic science training including Crime Scene Investigation and Pattern Evidence courses.

NFSTC will enhance the structure and operation of the FTCoE to ensure the continuation and timely delivery of technology transfer and quality assurance activities. Enhancements to the Center include additional resources for research, development, testing and evaluation (RDT&E) in support of the NIJ; expanded evaluation of technology solutions; and support for new technology implementation. FTCoE will continue to provide quality assessments of publicly funded DNA laboratories and grant progress assessments for NIJ grantees.

The NamUs program continuation will provide for increased staffing, updating and maintenance of the system, outreach and training activities, provisions for forensic services, technical assistance and media and communications services. NamUs is a clearinghouse for missing persons and unidentified decedent records. The free online system can be searched and updated by medical examiners, coroners, law enforcement officials and the general public to solve missing or unidentified person cases. NamUs also provides free DNA testing and other forensic services, such as anthropology and odontology assistance.

For the law enforcement community, NFSTC will offer the Intermediate Crime Scene Investigation course and the Pattern Evidence Latent Print course. Intermediate Crime Scene Investigation expands the information covered in the Essentials of Crime Scene Investigation course, and is targeted to experienced investigators who routinely process crime scenes. Pattern Evidence Latent Print classes will provide additional opportunities for forensic science practitioners to acquire formal training in pattern evidence.

NFSTC, in partnership with the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), will collaborate with subject-matter experts from the High-Tech Crime Institute (HTCI) to enhance and expand the existing Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force training program. These enhancements will provide for increased cost-effectiveness, making the training more accessible to Task Force members and affiliated law enforcement agencies, and will include tools and techniques to improve digital investigation, identifying and documenting best practices and developing collateral materials for distribution through the OJJDP website.

“We’re pleased with this opportunity to expand our relationship with the Department of Justice through these programs,” stated Kevin Lothridge, NFSTC CEO. “These programs and initiatives will help forward our mission to support the justice community through improving the quality of forensic science practices.”

NFSTC announces new Footwear Tiretrack Training

New Training Program

In partnership with the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), the National Forensic Science Technology Center (NFSTC) is pleased to announce that Footwear/Tire Track Examiner Training will be provided at no cost to eligible applicants under an NIJ Cooperative Agreement Award (#2009‐DN‐BX‐K198).

This training program is designed to lead a cohort group of entry level footwear/tire track examiner trainees through sequential course offerings in preparation for taking the International Association for Identification (IAI) certification examination.

The Footwear/Tire Track Examiner Training program consists of five courses: four onsite instructional sessions at the NFSTC training facilities in Largo, FL and one off‐site session in Tennessee to accommodate a factory tour.

Download the full announcement for program details and link to online application:

  2010-2011 NFSTC Footwear Tiretrack Training Annoucement

Applications will be accepted from Mon. 7/19/10 through 11:59 pm EDT, Sun. August 22, 2010.

To be eligible for participation in this training program, applicants must:

  • Work for a U.S. publicly funded State, local or tribal agency as a professional practitioner in law enforcement or forensic services
  • Possess the visual acuity to examine small details under magnification
  • Possess a reasonable level of skill in English, arithmetic, computer keyboarding and word processing

Applicants selected to attend the program will be required to:

  • Successfully complete visual acuity tests (tests will be provided)
  • Obtain agency approval and provide documentation to the NFSTC (approval form will be provided)
  • Provide written verification that all eligibility requirements are met (verification form will be provided)

 Course delivery begins in October 2010 and concludes in June 2011.

NFSTC Provides Key Training to Military

MilitaryForensicsNFSTC recently completed a two-week, hands-on Site Exploitation course for military service members. Participants in the course gained critical skills to identify, prioritize and collect evidence, and perform presumptive testing on powders, explosive materials and controlled substances.

“By using forensic techniques to analyze the evidence found at a site, warfighters can get a much better understanding of the types of activities that suspects are engaged in and help determine whether or not they are a threat,” said CEO Kevin Lothridge.

 With this key training, the newly-trained military service members have the forensic skills they need to identify terrorist activities and make the best decisions possible on the battlefield.

FIDEX to be Presented at the 2009 NIEM National Training Event

FIDEXgraphicNFSTC’s Forensic Information Data Exchange (FIDEX) project has been selected for inclusion in the upcoming National Information Exchange Model (NIEM) Training Conference to be held in Baltimore, MD, from September 30 to October 2, 2009. The presentation, “Leveraging Existing NIEM and XML Standards: the Forensic Information Data Exchange (FIDEX) Project,” will provide results of a pilot implementation of FIDEX and demonstrate how FIDEX can be used to share information among agencies, streamlining forensic case submission and case disposition processes.

“FIDEX allows agencies to share NIEM compliant evidence information which can make operations much more efficient,” said Mike O’Berry of the NFSTC. “For instance, crime labs often find themselves entering evidence information multiple times during the forensic case submission process. With FIDEX, law enforcement can exchange case data from their system with the crime laboratory information management system (LIMS) electronically, eliminating duplication of effort and increasing the efficiency of the entire process.”

The FIDEX team includes Aaron Gorrell of Waterhole Software, Robin Wilson Jones of NIJ and Mike O’Berry of NFSTC. The team will discuss how agencies and crime labs can start using FIDEX for their own jurisdictions.