This month’s Forensic Update brings you news about chemical testing innovations, scent preservation kits, and the development of a marijuana sobriety test.
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For the ninth year, The National Forensic Science Technology Center (NFSTC) is hosting ROTC Cadets from across the country for the Biometric and Forensic Internship.
The sought after program covers hands-on introductory training from DNA to digital forensics in an intense two-week course, from Monday, July 17 – Friday, July 28. Each discipline is taught by NFSTC’s own subject matter experts and targets growing areas of importance to our nation’s security.
The Cadets will also be expanding their skills at the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Firing Range, Tuesday, July 25. For the fourth year, the Sheriff’s Office instructors will teach the Cadets about firearm use and safety. Then, they are allowed to utilize the facility to practice those skills.
NFSTC has provided this internship at no cost to the Cadets nor their commands since 2009. “We see this as a way to introduce tomorrow’s leaders today to these skills. In these two weeks, we can provide the Cadets with knowledge and understanding that will set them apart in their career path,” explains Kevin Lothridge, NFSTC’s CEO.
To learn more about the internship, including available sponsorship opportunities, visit nfstc.org.
For the eighth year, NFSTC hosted students from the Junior Achievement of Tampa Bay STEM TEC program. This year, 44 students were selected to attend the event – a record number.
Five stations were set up covering bio-screening, alternate light source, latent prints, digital forensics, and a CSI: Rocks station. Using tools from their very own CSI kits, the students learned about each topic through hands-on activities and demonstrations. The take home kits were supplied through a grant from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Advisory Board.
The STEM TEC program, developed by Junior Achievement and WorkNet Pinellas, provides career exploration and workplace readiness training to economically disadvantaged students age 14-17 through a four-week summer program and year-round engagements. The program includes employer site visits to gain job awareness and interest in STEM-specific fields.
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The intense 20-week DNA analyst training for 14 Central American students has concluded and participants are safely back in their home countries. On site since January, the students tackled techniques and protocols from bio-screening to trial presentation via a blended learning approach.
The students used our online DNA Training program to gain history and theoretical knowledge, followed by hands-on instruction and practice in every step of DNA analysis. NFSTC provided Spanish-speaking instructors and an interpreter to assist at every level, ensuring quality training regardless of language barriers.
Five countries, Honduras, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala and Panama, each sent two or three representatives. Each laboratory faces its own set of obstacles, but thorough training and consistent knowledge will help build capacity, moving towards accreditation, and support justice initiatives moving forward.
Hard to believe an idea between 30 crime lab directors in December 1973 would flourish into the international network of professional and academic colleagues the American Society of Crime Lab Directors (ASCLD) is known as today.
At this year’s annual ASCLD symposium in Dallas a very special booth in the expo hall celebrated the history of the organization with a timeline of achievements and notable moments.
The milestones highlighted across the 15 foot display include the humble beginnings scribbled in Briggs White’s notebook, the acceptance of DNA as evidence, and the creation of ASCLD/LAB. It tells the story of the men and women who helped shaped the organization through the incredible changes in legislation and scientific discovery.
Attendees stopped by to take a moment to flip through the old newsletters or watch photos scroll past on the TV. Tweet your favorite memory with #ASCLDhistory.
The next ASCLD Symposium will be in Atlanta in 2018.