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probably saved his life. That’s something

I think about a lot.” McCafferty

acknowledged that he doesn’t know

what ultimately happened to the boy he

“saved,” but that success as a probation

officer is often measured by “never seeing

that individual again.”

McCafferty felt like he could also have

an impact at the college level. In Fall

2006, he enrolled in the Criminal Justice

graduate program at the University of

Cincinnati (Cincy), where he received

his master’s degree in 2007, and a Ph.D.

in Criminal Justice in 2013. Today, he is

still the only Lycoming criminal justice

graduate to receive his doctorate. After

a couple of years teaching at Cincy,

McCafferty followed his wife, Heidi, to

Kennesaw State University.

“I wanted to teach. There was always

that desire to teach inside me,” said

McCafferty. At Kennesaw, he’s had the

chance to work with students, fostering

their strengths and helping them in

their professional careers. “I really enjoy

mentoring. I just placed a student at

Georgia State after working with her for

a few years. She has a full ride to their

grad school. That’s something I’m very

proud of.”

McCafferty encourages his students

to embrace opportunities and to make

both personal and academic connections

to get to the next step — something

he learned at Lycoming. “Some of

my professors at Lycoming were my

employers and greatest inspiration.

Every step of my career has had a

logical progression because of the

people I met at Lycoming.”

Today, McCafferty wants to increase

his research footprint. Recently, he

became a consultant on a million-dollar

grant for the Department of Juvenile

Justice and Delinquency Prevention

that looks at risk assessment in Ohio,

Indiana and Arizona. In addition,

McCafferty is the mentor for the

Kennesaw criminal justice student

organization and hopes to make the

Ghana training an annual trip.

“Lycoming wasn’t so much a stepping

stone as much as a jumping-off point,”

said McCafferty. “Without Lycoming, I

certainly wouldn’t be where I am today.”

Growing up, McCafferty thought

of working in criminal justice as an

attorney or judge, but remembers

wanting to be a high school history

teacher more than anything. “When I

went to Lycoming in 1999, I was still

planning on becoming a history teacher,”

said McCafferty, “but I never took a

single education or history course as

an undergraduate. I took this criminal

justice course with Dr. Carter and that

was it. I just fell into criminal justice and

loved it.”

And McCafferty has already had a

rewarding and varied career. While

still attending Lycoming, he worked

with juvenile delinquents at STEP

Inc., a wilderness challenge program

in Williamsport. After graduation,

McCafferty was a probation officer in

York County, Pennsylvania, a place

where his instincts actually helped save a

young man’s life. “Going through initial

intake checklists, I asked a particular

young man if he was considering

suicide,” recalled McCafferty. “The boy

said ‘yes’ and that was the only time

I’d ever received that response. The

boy was immediately transferred to a

mental health facility. A couple of weeks

later the judge presiding over his case

pulled me aside and told me that the boy

was serious about his intent and that I

McCafferty encourages

his students to embrace

opportunities and to make

both personal and academic

connections to get to the

next step — something he

learned at Lycoming

“Lycoming wasn’t so much a stepping stone as much as a jumping-off point”

39

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