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Tom Cartwright

Tom Cartwright

Chance encounters can change lives.

For Tom Cartwright, MA Justice Administration and Public Service, ’15, a trip to the car wash a few months back should have been just routine.  However, it became a watershed moment when he began talking with fellow dirty car owner Dr. Jim Ford.  As it turns out, Cartwright was looking for a graduate program to advance his career as a N.J. State Parole Officer, and Dr. Ford heads the Master’s in Justice Administration and Public Service program at CSE.

The match was perfect.

“Dr. Ford saw the PBA shield in Cartwright’s, mentioned it, and we began talking,” said Cartwright. “Dr. Ford described the online master’s program, and encouraged me to go back to school.” Cartwright was already familiar with College of Saint Elizabeth, having worked as an athletic trainer covering basketball and volleyball games as well as tennis matches on campus. At that time, he worked for JAG Physical Therapy, but wanted a career shift and chance for advancement.

 He further investigated the program and felt it matched his lifestyle and career goals.

“While serving in the Marines, I finished my Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education with a concentration in Athletic Training at Kean University, and started a Master’s in Health Administration at New Jersey City University,” he said. “But my master’s program was interrupted by a tour in Iraq and I never finished the thesis.” Now, I find I like being a parole officer and want a graduate program that will help me advance in the justice field.

A bonus, he said, is the CSE master’s program is fully online and does not require a thesis. “I feel more comfortable with the capstone seminar instead of a thesis...I know I will finish this whatever my work schedule.”

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