Western Illinois LEJA Alumni Stay Loyal to the Communities They Serve
MACOMB/Moline, IL – The Western Illinois University Law Enforcement and Justice Administration (LEJA) program, a top public safety program in the nation, has a long history of serving the Quad Cities community following graduation.
The School of LEJA provides students with a diverse and wide array of criminal justice and public safety expertise through real-world practical application and critical thinking. WIU is equipped with faculty members from many diverse backgrounds throughout the field of law enforcement, including emergency management, EMT, fire protection services, law and more, that allow students to gain the real-world experience it takes to serve the local community and beyond. Following graduation, not only are students prepared for a variety of careers, but staying local provides students with many relationship-building opportunities and trust in the community.
“WIU’s Law Enforcement degree is popular with local officers, current and retired, both in the Quad Cities and Macomb,” said former Quad-City Leatherneck Club Coordinator Thom Cornelis. “Having police chiefs on both sides of the river and being WIU-LEJA graduates is a very rewarding asset to our community.”
A large number of WIU graduates tend to stay local when choosing a career. The Quad Cities community offers countless opportunities for LEJA alumni to stay local, including police, correctional officers, safety officers, security and more.
“WIU is a vital resource for the law enforcement community,” said Silvis Chief of Police Mark Van Klaveren. “The QC area is a great place to start a career and officers often make an immediate impact on the community because it is important to them. WIU is well-known for its LEJA program and students are prepared right out of college to take on the challenges that working with the public brings.”
Current and Retired WIU-LEJA QC Police Chiefs:
- Davenport Police Department-Incoming Chief Jeff Bladel; Outgoing Chief Paul Sikorski
- East Moline Police Department-Retired Chiefs John Reynolds and Victor Moreno
- Illinois State Police District 7 Commander Captain Jason Dickey
- Milan Police Department-Retired Chief Mark Beckwith (currently is the Deputy Chief of Police and Public Safety at Augustana College)
- Rock Island County Sheriff Darren Hart
- Three of the last four Rock Island Police Department chiefs were WIU alumni (Jeff VenHuizen, Scott Harris and John Wright)
- Silvis Police Department-Chief Mark VanKlaveren
For more information on the School of LEJA, visit wiu.edu/coehs/leja.