Criminal Justice hosts Autism Awareness program

Officer Akins presents on Autism Awareness

The Radford University Department of Criminal Justice and the Scholar Citizen Initiative hosted a program on Autism Awareness for Criminal Justice by Officer Travis Akins of the Roanoke City Police Department to campus on April 4, 2016 at 4pm in the Hurlburt Student Center auditorium.  Officer Akins is a crime prevention specialist for the City of Roanoke and created the Growth Through Opportunity (GTO) program that places individuals with varying neurodevelopmental disabilities into a four month training program where they work with job coaches at various public safety agencies to learn job skills.  The presentation focused on interactions between law enforcement and individuals on the autism spectrum and their families, do’s and don’ts for responding to calls with these individuals, and the GTO program as well as partnerships with agencies outside of law enforcement.

This program was attended by over 90 individuals from the Radford University community and students from inside and outside of the Criminal Justice program encouraged to attend.

Students interested in an internship with the GTO program are asked to contact Officer Travis Akins at

Additional information on the GTO Cadet program can be found on their websiteor their Facebook page.

Apr 5, 2016
Eric Snow