Though she wouldn’t have called it criminal justice at the time, Erika’s interest in the field she came to pursue was ignited early. Growing up in the San Luis Valley, she encountered many young people who had run adrift of the law, and she wondered if there were something she could do to help point them in the right direction. The answer, as Erika learned when she discovered the Criminal Justice Program at FRCC, was a resounding yes.

Married and mother to a young son when she enrolled, Erika poured her heart and soul into her studies. And with the knowledge acquired through her courses, the encouragement of our dedicated instructors, and the experience gained in a volunteer position, she quickly turned her long-standing passion into a career path. In quick succession, Erika earned an Associate of General Studies degree with Criminal Justice emphasis at FRCC, graduated magna cum laude with a major in criminology and minor in sociology from Metropolitan State University of Denver, and began a successful career as a probation officer with Adams County.

In fact, after five years on the job, Erika was named her department’s employee of the year. And we feel certain the many people she’s helped along her journey would like to recognize all she’s done on their behalf, as well.

“My teachers at FRCC pushed me to succeed, to be the student they knew I could be. They didn’t let me fall through the cracks. They cared about my progress. I found a community and a culture and made friends for life there.”