The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

Forensic Science Club hosts crime scene investigator, alumna

GVL | Risho Wooten

Grand Valley State University’s Forensic Science Club hosted alumna Mallory Kaysserian, a certified crime scene technician at the Grand Rapids Police Department (GRPD) for an informational event.

Kaysserian spoke about her career working in crime scene investigation and described the details of her job. She showed pictures that she took of crime scenes and presented what she does through a PowerPoint presentation. Kaysserian wanted to separate real life from fiction and emphasized that her career is not like what is seen on TV shows. 

At the end of the presentation, the floor was open to questions where students asked Kaysserian about her work hours, what the crime scene team is like, if she has ever had to testify in court and other related questions.

Kaysserian said she wanted to be the spokesperson for students who want to pursue that career. 

“GVSU has an amazing Criminal Justice Program. However, when I attended, there was no faculty that specialized in forensics. I hope to be (a) forensic contact for GVSU students who have questions about the field,” Kaysserian said.

Kaysserian said she was grateful for her time presenting at GVSU. Kaysserian earned both her bachelor’s and master’s at GVSU. She also attributes her time spent getting an education at GVSU to where she is now in her career. 

I think GVSU got me to where I am today. The internships and classes I took prepared me for where I am now. I’m extremely thankful for my time at Grand Valley,” Kaysserian said. “This is my dream job. I know I’m one of very few people who can say that, and I’m extremely grateful. I love what I do, which is also why I love talking to students about it.” 

Kaysserian brought in a prop beer bottle that had fingerprints on it and a test used to measure iron from blood. Many students stayed after the presentation to further look at the props and ask questions.

GVSU students Makenna Kuhn and Alexa Patalon were interested in the crime scene photos and props Kaysserian shared. Kuhn and Patalon both hope to learn more about forensic science. 

“I’ve always had an interest in forensics, so when I found this club I was like ‘might as well come in and see what it’s all about and see what I need to do to get to where I want to go,'” Patalon said. “I thought it was really cool that we get to listen to someone that does this for a job.” 

The event came about when Forensic Science Club President Skylar Smith reached out to GRPD to ask if anyone would be willing to speak to students about forensic science.

“One of the goals of my club was to educate the student body about what forensic science is because CSI shows and stuff are fun to watch, but are not exactly accurate,” Smith said. 

Smith said GVSU does not have a forensic science major which means that students wanting to take a career path have to take other avenues to pursue this career. This inspired Smith to create the Forensic Science Club this semester to bring together students for networking and education. 

The club aims to give students interested in a forensic science career the knowledge of what requirements are needed to get a career in the field.

The club will have another event on March 11 with multiple speakers who work on crime scenes.

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