Walking down the urban streets of Baltimore, you may smell blue crabs, see tourist attractions and even hear the word ‘hun’. Yet, similar to other metropolitan cites, Baltimore has her dark side. Fortunately, the city is also full of qualified criminal justice professionals trained to protect the citizens and keep Baltimoreans safe.

(Photo Courtesy of Mark Vernarelli)

(Photo Courtesy of Mark Vernarelli)

As a former award-winning television news anchor in Baltimore, Mark Vernarelli is mostly known for his integrity and commitment to responsible journalism. He is an honest soul whose outstanding investigative reporting led to a more specialized, current role as the Director for Public Information at the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.

Mark Vernarelli’s career is truly admirable as it demonstrates how having a continuous thirst for knowledge can quench career goals. Below, he offers a bit of inspirational career advice to others as they journey along their respective career maps.

Where did you go to college and what was your major? 

“I received my degree from Salem College in West Virginia, a small school that had many interesting careers in focus. My degree was in broadcasting: radio and television with a journalism emphasis. I also studied criminal justice. Education is critical for any career, and keeping up with current and emerging trends in your field is vital.”

Do you think that continuing education is helpful to your current position? 

“My background of more than 20 years in broadcast communications and more than 10 in media relations and public information has been well served by my education, and I continue to learn as much as I can, as frequently as possible.”
How has your education shaped your career goals? 

“In my case, my choice of careers actually shaped my education. I knew what I wanted to do before going to college. But as my career evolved from broadcast journalism to public information and media relations in a specialized field (criminal justice, with corrections and community supervision foremost), I saw the need to keep learning in order to make sure my background and the rapidly evolving technology worked together to stay on top of a new subject area.”

Do you have any advice for others considering a career in criminal justice? 

“Criminal justice and communications are both fascinating fields with many widely varying subject areas that can provide an ambitious person with a rewarding career.”

Keisha Oduor is a professional writer and entrepreneur who resides in Baltimore, Maryland. She has a degree in Communications and French from New York University with work experience in publishing, nonprofits, healthcare administration and program management. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.


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