Shannon Sutton

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'17 Criminology | Intelligence Analyst, CACI | McLean, VA
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Shannon Sutton

Liberal Arts Major: Criminology

Liberal Arts Minor: Psychology

Hometown: Rockaway, NJ

Current Location: Arlington, VA

What enrichment activities did you participate in as a student?

As a student at Penn State, I was a Learning Assistant for the College of Information Sciences and Technology for two years. In addition, I interned with the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, State College Police Department, and National Geospatial Intelligence Agency. These opportunities led me to the career field I am in today.

What was your first job after graduating from Penn State?

After graduating from Penn State, I worked as a Federal Police Officer with the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency in Springfield, Virginia.

What was your favorite class and/or who was your favorite faculty member?

As an undergrad, my favorite class was PSYCH 423 Social Psychology of Interpersonal/Intergroup Relationships. This class performed an in-depth study of relationships among individuals and/or groups, which gave me a new perspective on human psychology in the current climate.

My favorite faculty member was Dr. Edward Glantz in the College of Information Sciences and Technology. Although I was not earning a major in IST, I was able to assist his lectures as a Learning Assistant for two years. This experience was rewarding and built my network as an undergraduate student.

How did your liberal arts education and skills prepare you for life after graduation?

My liberal arts education was helpful in preparing for life after graduation through intensive oral and written assignments. Each assignment strengthened my communication skills, which are essential in any career path.

What networking advice would you share with current students?

In my personal career path, networking has been the leading influence in my career. While studying at Penn State, I attended many career fairs and networking events and followed up with each individual after the event. The advice I would share with current students is to take each opportunity presented to you, because you never know where it could potentially lead.

What role have mentors played in your career progression?

Through the Penn State Liberal Arts Alumni Mentor Program, I was matched with an Intelligence Analyst for the FBI who helped me navigate the complexities of the Intelligence Community within the federal government. My mentor helped weigh different opportunities to align with my career goals, assisted in key job applications, and continues to support me well into my post-graduate career.

Flashback to Shannon as an Undergrad:

 

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