Christina Porter

2018 recipient of the Audrey J. Harris Summer Internship Award


Interned at WI Department of Justice, Field Operations Bureau (Major Crimes)

I’m currently going into my junior year and will be graduating in 2020 with degrees in Sociology and Legal Studies and a Certificate in Criminal Justice.  After graduation, I’ll commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army National Guard where I aim to specialize in Military Intelligence. My long term plans are to pursue a career in academic research regarding restorative justice.  

This summer I interned at the Department of Justice in the Division of Criminal Investigation, specifically with Major Crimes in the Field Operations Bureau. Major Crimes investigates crimes of statewide importance, including suspicious deaths, cold cases, officer-involved deaths, missing persons, and organized crime. My duties were primarily to help the Special Agents research cases, review records, write reports, and compile case files. However, I also spent a lot of time traveling around Wisconsin to sit in on witness interviews, assist in the execution of search warrants, attend preliminary hearings and John Doe proceedings, participate in EVOC (Emergency Vehicle Operator Course) Training, fire a handgun for the first time, and attend various Death Investigation training schools alongside of detectives from all over Wisconsin.  

The DCI’s vast jurisdiction allowed me to experience the criminal justice system at all levels and angles, from local police departments to District Attorneys’ Offices. I’ve not only been able to better understand what lots of specific careers within the criminal justice system entail, but also how all of these parts fit together to form a surprisingly tight-knit community. Having this intimate knowledge of the system has deepened my enthusiasm for the field, and also given me a more mature and nuanced view of things. This real-world experience has been invaluable, and I’m undoubtedly going to be a better, more informed student (and person in general) due to this internship. 

I’m deeply appreciative and flattered to have been the recipient of Ms. Harris’ generosity. Finding a field which you are both excited about and which gives you the opportunity to make a positive difference in the world is a rare experience. Thanks to this scholarship, I have been able to fully inundate myself into this internship and spend every day learning something new about the criminal justice system. I’m excited to take everything I learned with me to future classes and an eventual career. Thank you!