Criminal Justice Living Learning Community

Law Enforcement Hiring Presentaiton with Roanoke County Police Department Recruiter Brian Lee
Roanoke County Police Department Recruiter Brian Lee speaks to students during a presentation on Law Enforcement Hiring Processes.

The Criminal Justice Living-Learning Community (LLC) is an opportunity for incoming freshman Criminal Justice majors to engage in learning, professional development, career related tours and presentations, criminal justice-themed experiences, and community service to fully explore the criminal justice system.  Students in the LLC program will live in the same residential hall, take classes together in the fall of 2023 and spring of 2024, and participate in criminal justice-themed professional programming. 







ATF Classroom Visit
Agency representatives from the ATF speak with students during a classroom presentation on their agency, the types of investigations they handle, and careers within the ATF.

Community Values

1.    Professionalism – Criminal justice is a dynamic field.  In the Criminal Justice LLC, you will explore the most current issues in criminal justice and how they impact the field.

2.    Career Readiness - The Criminal Justice LLC will help you to develop a professional identity.  You will identify how your coursework fits in the REAL model, develop a resume and a LinkedIn profile, explore career development opportunities, and begin interacting with working professionals in criminal justice.

3.    Community Service – Criminal justice is a public service profession.  In the Criminal Justice LLC, you will participate in community service events or programs to develop the ability to help others.

4.    Collaboration – All areas of criminal justice must be collaborative and not live in silos.  Through the Criminal Justice LLC, you will see how Law enforcement, the courts, and corrections all collaborate not only with each other, but also with outside agencies such as social services, mental health, and community members.

Participation Eligibility and Admission Process

Initial entry is limited to incoming freshman students with a declared major in Criminal Justice.  The learning community application is located within the housing application.  Students may remain in the program for up to two years.

Program Highlights

The Criminal Justice LLC will allow you to experience all aspects of the criminal justice system.  You will explore careers, network with professionals in the criminal justice field, visit agencies from the three components of the criminal justice system (police, courts, and corrections) and related fields, learn about current issues facing the criminal justice system, and interact with department faculty.  Since most careers in criminal justice are service related, you will also have community service opportunities throughout the year.

Students in the Criminal Justice LLC will take two courses together:  UNIV-100, Introduction to Higher Education (fall semester) and CRJU-290, Professionalism and Career Development in Criminal Justice (spring semester).

Signature Experiences, Activities, and Events

Students will visit criminal justice agencies to see firsthand how they operate and apply the material they are learning in class.  Programming specific to criminal justice will be offered to participants.  This programming will include guest speakers, hands-on activities, and career exploration.

Planned on campus activities include:

  • Campus visits from law enforcement, courts, and correctional agency representatives.
  • Trauma Informed Care, Rape Aggression Defense (RAD), and similar presentations from campus partners.
  • Discussions with criminal justice faculty about their research/specialty.
  • Mock crime scene competition.
  • Opportunities to experience our use of force and dispatch simulators.
  • Networking events with our alumni in various CJ professions.
  • An exploration of mindfulness and teamwork in criminal justice.
  • And more!

Please contact Dr. Steve Owen, professor in the Criminal Justice Department at for additional information or with questions.

Mock trial picture

Members of the Mock Trial Team and their coach, Mr. Don Martin, perform for the PreLaw Society opening meeting.

2022 graduation picture

2022 Criminal Justice Graduates await the commencement ceremony.

Burn trailer

Students investigate fires using the Virginia Department of Fire Programs' Burn Trailer in Mr. Jones' Arson Investigation class.

Dispatch simulator

Students utilize the dispatch simulator with assistance from a professional.