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School of Criminal Justice
Phone: 1-877-701-3800 ext.16948
Justice Sciences awarded him the Founder's Award, the highest award given to a professor in the Academy.
Teaching was always Letman's goal. "I thought I could make more of a difference as a college instructor than in the other jobs I had. As a college instructor, you have the opportunity to educate people about the right and wrong way to do things. You have a larger influence on people."
Although Letman has been teaching for over three decades, he began teaching online only two years ago. "Teaching is teaching though, whether it is online or in a classroom. You have to know how to communicate material and like to help people. I'm a people person and enjoy the interaction with students, whether face-to-face or online."
Letman says online and traditional educations aren't really different once you get past the obvious. "Of course you don't have students sitting in front on you in an online class, but I still get to know the student body and develop relationships with students. Especially now that AIU Online has founded a Criminal Justice Club, I expect it to give both criminal justice instructors and students a real opportunity to get to know one another."
"AIU Online's new Macromedia Breeze system helps tremendously too. I can use a microphone and headset to have a one-on-one conversation with a student. It is almost like being right there with them."
Letman thinks an online education has one big advantage over a traditional one for adult learners. "There is no time wasting. When I taught at ground schools, I usually taught evening courses from 6pm until 9pm or so. After 8pm learning was always over because those folks would be so tired after a full day at work. If I didn't transmit what I wanted to in the first two hours, I had to give up, no one had the attention span anymore. Online everyone is working according to their own time schedule and is a lot fresher."
"An online education is absolutely not any less of an education than a brick and mortar one. AIU Online's Criminal Justice program is every bit the same quality as a traditional program. We work our students to death. They're not losing anything."
The months of hard work on the part of AIU Online Criminal Justice students pays off though. "The job market in Criminal Justice has really expanded, primarily due to 9/11. All federal and local agencies are looking for well-educated people." Letman says the local FBI recruiter calls him every six months to see if he has any students to recommend.
"Criminal Justice is a really good field to be in right now - there are just so many opportunities... but you have to have a Bachelor's degree, preferably in Criminal Justice."
And Letman says AIU Online Criminal Justice graduates are set up to succeed in any area of Criminal Justice. "The Criminal Justice education at AIU Online is a liberal arts education. We are not a vocational program. We don't teach you how to be a police officer; the police academy does that. What we are preparing you for is to be a thinking and caring professional that knows the field, understands people and knows how to deal with various situations that can come up."