CSI: The job possibilities

2014-03-22T15:38:00Z 2014-03-22T19:19:08Z CSI: The job possibilitiesKurt Allemeier kallemeier@qctimes.com The Quad-City Times

The Putnam Museum in Davenport showed how science and sleuthing come together in crime scene investigation with a job fair Saturday.

 Students and faculty were on hand from Western Illinois University to promote the school's criminal justice program, while Augustana College had staff from its biology department there to talk about pathology. The University of Wisconsin-Platteville sent representatives of its forensics program.

Davenport Fire Department personnel did demonstrations with Selma, an accelerant detection dog. The department is about to open its hiring process so application information was handed out, too.

Davenport Police showed off examples of taking tire and shoe prints and different ways of detecting fingerprints. Lead crime scene technician Jill Foster also had basic tools of the trade, showing off a camera and evidence markers.

The job fair highlights the science that goes into the Davenport museum's exhibit, "CSI: The Experience," which continues until July 6. The exhibit is based on the CBS television show, "CSI." The museum will open its STEM center, focusing on science, technology, engineering and math, next month.

"Since we're opening the STEM Center, we're emphasizing the types of careers available if you go into science, engineering or math," said Chris Chandler, the Putnam's curator of natural science. "Everyone asks, "when will I ever get to use this?" Well, let us show you how."

Foster, who has been in her position in Davenport for four years, has degrees in chemistry and criminalistics from St. Ambrose University. She offers a mixed review of how the popular television show relates to her job.

"A lot of it is basically what we do, but they make it more glamorous and easy," she said.

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