Public Safety Administration Student’s Quest to Become a Criminal Defense Attorney

First-year student Khachik Hovhannisyan isn’t the 9-to-5 type. Khachik, who hails from Arleta, has lately been engaged in getting a hands-on peek at how the world works, participating in a leadership academy with Los Angeles City Council member Paul Krekorian, and serving as an intern in the Law Offices of Margarit Kazaryan in Glendale, among other pursuits.

“After graduating high school, I reflected on my experiences and realized that I wanted a career that wouldn’t lock me to a chair in front of a computer for 40 hours a week,” he says. A Woodbury representative briefed members of his high school class on the university’s Public Safety Administration (PSA) program. “Instantly, I knew that this was exactly what I was looking for,“ Khachik recalls.

The leadership academy with Councilman Krekorian – which he describes as “a crash course on how companies and organizations work together to keep the community safe and functioning properly” – whet his appetite for the kinds of criminal justice issues the PSA program was created to address. And the Kazaryan law office internship, where Khachik says he was taught “the fundamental procedures and skills that an attorney needs to have in order to do his or her part in the system,” sealed the deal, clarifying his career aspiration: criminal defense attorney.

“I recognize my strengths as an ability to connect with others, get my point across efficiently, and to see, appreciate and predict another’s perspectives,” he says. “For me, one of the greatest attractions of Woodbury is the comfort the university provides. The campus feels like home, and professors and advisors have amazing experiences and insights to offer, whatever the field of study.” He relishes the prospect of interviewing attorneys, meeting with FBI agents, visiting prisons and generally deepening his understanding of the criminal justice system, firsthand.

In Khachik’s view, Woodbury’s PSA program looks to be a game-changer. “All of this paves the road to a criminal justice career,” he says.

Learn more about the Public Safety Administration program

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