Pasco-Hernando State College Volume XIV, Issue II Fall 2020 | Page 5

CSI: PHSC Executive Director of Public Service Programs Charles May often jokes with his students by asking, ‘Would you donate your body?’ He laughs as the answer is generally ‘no’ but a donated body to science is exactly what future students of the Pasco-Hernando State College Forensics program will be analyzing. PHSC will be offering forensics as an AS degree or a certificate. Students will take classes such as crime scene safety, fingerprint dusting, or crime scene photography. The program will give students a hands-on approach to learning to help them get ready for a career in forensics from the moment they complete the program. Forensics is growing in popularity, May says in part to the many television shows with a crime scene focus, but also because of the emphasis on technology. “Now with all the technology and DNA research that’s available more cases are being solved than ever and people who were wrongly convicted are being released.” The way a crime scene is analyzed is constantly evolving and students will learn how to work a scene from print dusting to analyzing body decomposition. In partnership with the Pasco Sheriff’s Office, PHSC students will use the Thomas Varnadoe Forensic Center for Education and Research located in Land O’ Lakes. The center is the seventh body farm created in the United States. Forensics students will study bodies decomposing in a variety of ways. They will be able to use the information in real-world crime analysis. Forensics is going to play a key role in workforce development for students in Pasco and Hernando counties and PHSC’s forensics program will set students up with a pathway toward their future career. FALL 2020 3