Psychology major earns spot in IUP Municipal Police Academy

Created: August 3, 2020

Last Updated: July 31, 2020



WASHINGTON, PA (Aug. 3, 2020)—It’s not easy to find your path and commit to it, but Washington & Jefferson College (W&J) is making it a little easier for rising senior Tyler Evans ’21.

Tyler set his sights on a career in law enforcement and took the risky step of changing his major and minor halfway through his junior year to help him pursue this goal. In December, he officially became a psychology major and mathematics minor, choosing Professor of Psychology Michael Crabtree, Ph.D., to serve as his advisor after meeting him through a psychology 101 course and learning about Dr. Crabtree’s work with local police departments and his specialization in law enforcement.

“I realized pretty quickly that this was someone I needed to get to know,” Tyler said. “Dr. Crabtree has been the best advisor I have had in my time spent in college and…truly a supporter of mine who is always looking to find what is best for my success.”

At the same time, he got in touch with the director of the Act 120 Municipal Police Academy through the Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) Criminal Justice Training Center to begin the application process for the program. The decision paid off for Tyler, who was able to successfully complete his training requirements and earn a spot in the academy beginning this fall.

Unafraid of a trying something new, the decision to change his major wasn’t the first adjustment Tyler made.

“I transferred to W&J in 2018…and I love W&J,” he said. “Support and encouragement from the Psychology Department is something that I greatly appreciate. So far, I’ve had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Crabtree and Dr. Bennett about my plans, and both have been excellent resources and extremely helpful.”

Tyler will enter the academy, which is being hosted by IUP at Robert Morris University for its central location for cadets, on Aug. 15, completing the program requirements concurrently with his senior year at W&J. His coursework will cover response to mass tragedy and domestic violence, first-aid training, and firearms training.

Tyler is well-aware of the national conversation surrounding law enforcement and has thoughtfully considered that discourse as he prepares to take this next step. He shared he wants to be part of the solution.

“It is my goal and I feel my duty to serve my community properly and treat everyone the same—regardless of how I might feel personally about a situation,” he said. “I realize that I’m the police officer, the evidence collector, the peace maker, and not the judge or jury.”

Tyler plans to pursue employment with a local municipality following his graduation and completion of academy.

About Washington & Jefferson College

Washington & Jefferson College, located in Washington, Pa., is a selective liberal arts college founded in 1781. Committed to providing each of its students with the highest-quality undergraduate education available, W&J offers a traditional arts and sciences curriculum emphasizing interdisciplinary study and independent study work. For more information about W&J, visit, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.

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