Graduate Studies

Community Engagement and Public Safety Leadership

Director: Jill J. Myers
Graduate Committee Chairperson: Todd Lough
Office: Stipes Hall 403
Telephone: (309) 298-1038 Fax: (309) 298-2187
Location of Program Offering: Macomb, Online

Learning Outcomes

For student learning outcomes, please see

Program Description

Public safety issues involving law enforcement officers use of excessive force, alleged acts of misconduct and disparity in enforcement have led to a renewed call for reforms in the selection and training of police officers, and in the practice and policy guiding the behavior of public safety organizations. These developments have highlighted the often-strained relationship between public safety officials and the communities they serve, especially communities of color. Hence the School of LEJA has developed a post baccalaureate certificate program (PBC) with its primary objective to develop and improve the leadership and engagement skills of students working in, or seeking, positions in public safety administration.

Public safety administrators must develop the communication and leadership skills necessary to build bridges between groups that mistrust each other, and to motivate change in a public safety culture that is historically slow to admit error or assume new responsibilities. The courses included in this PBC would further the necessary skills to accomplish such a timely mission.

Students in the Community Engagement and Public Safety Leadership PBC will be able to:

  1. Respond effectively as leaders in the current social justice climate in various communities throughout the country.
  2. Foster the development of personnel cognizant of the managerial process as it relates to competency, diversity, and disciplinary issues concerning the rights and responsibilities within a public safety context.
  3. Employ true community oriented public safety initiatives and restorative justice practices and change within diverse communities.
  4. Understand, implement, and supervise constitutional policing as it relates to searches, seizures, and use of force situations embodying multiple constitutional, federal, and state dictates.
  5. Discern and mitigate public disruption and civil unrest incidents using best practices related to crisis intervention and de-escalation policies consistent with constitutional protections and public safety threats.

Certificate Requirements

LEJA 502 Management Issues in Public Safety Administration (3)
LEJA 504 Civil and Criminal Liability (3)
LEJA 510 Public Personnel Law (3)
LEJA 511 Diversity in Public Safety (3)
LEJA 512 Ethics in Public Safety (3)
LEJA 520 Restorative Justice: Principles, Practices, and Implementation (3)

TOTAL:  18 s.h.

Course Descriptions

Law Enforcement and Justice Administration (LEJA)

502 Management Issues in Public Safety Administration. (3) Focus on the public safety agency from the standpoint of top and middle management, including (but not limited to) labor relations, personnel management, fiscal administration, and the integration of internal and external operations. Prerequisite: LEJA 501 or FS 481G or permission of the instructor/chair.

504 Civil and Criminal Liability. (3) The study of public safety administration policy and practice as impacted by principles of civil and criminal responsibility. Prerequisite: Six hours of undergraduate law courses or permission of the instructor/Director.

510 Public Personnel Law. (3) The study of the law and policy of public sector collective bargaining, employment discrimination and employee/employer rights and responsibilities within a public safety context. Prerequisite: LEJA 501 or 502 or permission of the instructor/Director.

511 Diversity in Public Safety. (3) This course examines the relationship between public safety personnel and the minority citizens they are to serve. Community relations are discussed as the basis for successful programs, as well as attracting and hiring minority public safety employees. Prerequisites: Graduate standing.

512 Ethics in Public Safety. (3) This course focuses on a variety of ethical/moral issues confronting public safety practitioners. Ethical choices, their consequences, and the relationships among law, morality, and ethics are discussed. Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor/Director.

520 Restorative Justice: Principles, Practices, and Implementation. (3) This course reviews the evolution and development of what has come to be known as Restorative Justice. The learning experience will address a variety of topics including restorative justice principles, community engagement, victim issues, and restorative practices and change. Prerequisite: Graduate standing.