Richard Funke, M.S. in Criminal Justice – Homeland Security Student
Current occupation: Federal Agent
What made you decide to pursue your degree as an adult?
I graduated from undergrad and immediately started working in my career in law enforcement. It became quickly apparent that promotions and other future career advancements would require furthering my education to understand the complex and evolving 21st-century threats facing Homeland Security professionals.
Why did you choose to study at Tiffin University?
Tiffin University offers an affordable program that made it worth it to go back to school. I had been looking for accredited schools, that were affordable, and offered courses taught by instructors that were also professionals in the field.
What has been your experience with the program so far? What has your experience been with the teaching staff in the program?
My experience has been great. I was not certain what it would be like to go back to school as an adult, mid-career, with young kids at home. The 7-week course layout is intense, but not impossible. The teaching staff has been great, and every one of them has been criminal justice professionals with decades of experience that perfectly complements the course material.
What keeps you motivated to stay in the program?
My future! I would like to move into teaching part-time at the local university, advance in my organization, and promote to provide the best life possible for my family. The program can be challenging, and there are more than a few difficult assignments, but I am already utilizing the skills and knowledge I have learned from the program to advance my career, and my future career goals seem closer than they have ever been.
What advice would you give to a prospective student who is thinking about going back to school?
School isn’t for everyone, but everyone can benefit from furthering their education. A master’s education is almost becoming mandatory in the highly competitive world of complex tasks and evolving threats. If you plan on advancing beyond a frontline position, be willing to take the risk on education.
TU’s motto is: Without risk there is no gain. Can you tell us about a time when you took a risk and what you gained from it?
I took a risk and moved across the country to take a position with a federal law enforcement agency. I have since moved a few times, gone on countless details, seen and experienced more than I ever thought I would as a law enforcement officer. I can say with a high degree of certainty that if I had not taken a risk and went into federal law enforcement and moved across the country (a few times) that I wouldn’t have gone back to school or be where I am today. Without risk, there is no gain.