Internship Leads to Deputy Sheriff Job for Mason Student

Posted: February 17, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Nicholas Zinzer

It’s every student’s hope that landing a good internship will lead to a full-time job before or after graduation. While that doesn’t always happen, it worked out that way for Matt Todd, a senior majoring in administration of justice.

George Mason encourages internships and even offers courses to help students increase their chances of success. Todd took ADJ 479, “Preparation for Internship” last spring and obtained an internship with the Prince William County Sheriff’s Department. He began working in May.

“[The internship program] is great because it’s a way to go in there and see what it is about,” says Todd. ADJ 479 was ideal for Todd because it focuses on preparing students for an internship in a justice organization or justice-related work activity.

Todd continued to work for the sheriff’s department through last fall, and was sworn in as deputy sheriff in December.

Todd works at the Prince William County Sheriff’s Department in Manassas as well as the Prince William County Judicial Center in Old Town Manassas. At the judicial center, Todd transports individuals accused of breaking the law. He also processes documents related to their hearing and sentencing. He works mostly with individuals accused or convicted of driving infractions such as drunk driving.

“If you were to get a ticket, for, say, reckless driving, I’d take you from the courtroom and put you in a holding cell,” Todd explains.

Cindy Clark, administrative division supervisor at the Prince William County Sheriff’s office, assisted Todd in acquiring his internship. She says Todd “exemplifies the values we look for in an employee, including respect, integrity, creativity, teamwork, excellence and responsibility.”

Part of that responsibility includes showing up for work at 7 a.m. each workday, a change from Todd’s former habit of sleeping in. But that contributes to his sense of accomplishment. “I feel like I’m helping the whole system by showing up on time and [having my superiors] showing me what to do,” he says.

The Prince William County Sheriff’s Department hires new interns every year, exclusively from George Mason. “It’s been a great partnership,” says Clark.

Todd expects to graduate from George Mason this spring.

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