Todd Ramljak, professor and instructional coordinator for the criminal justice program, is thrilled with the agreement, made last year between Elgin Community College and the City of Elgin Police Department, which allows students who graduated from ECC with their associate in applied sciences degree eligible to take the entry-level police officer exam.
“EPD knows that students in ECC’s criminal justice program have the knowledge, skills, and training needed to be successful police officers,” said Ramljak, a retired police officer who has spent 17 years as an instructor at ECC.
Ramljak started at ECC as the EPD officer assigned to patrol the campus – long before the creation of the ECC Police Department. He later came onboard to coordinate the criminal justice program, ensuring that students have access to the most up-to-date training,
Read on to learn more about Ramljak:
What is your greatest accomplishment since you’ve been here?
Working with the City of Elgin and the Elgin Police Department, and specifically with Chief Ana Lalley (also an adjunct instructor at ECC), to open the opportunity for ECC students who graduate with an AAS-Criminal Justice degree to take the entry-level police officer exam. Previously, a bachelor’s degree was required in most cases.
Name a job or role at ECC that you would like to try for one day and explain why.
I’d like to be a culinary student who is just about to graduate. This would mean I might know something about cooking. My current status is that I am lucky I can boil water. I can’t cook to save my life.
If you could instantly be an expert in one thing, what would you choose?
Student Success. I’d like to become an expert at getting students to succeed.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work (i.e., hobbies/interests)?
Is there anything other than golf? I like to golf. I enjoy watching football and working around my house.
If you could live in a TV show, which show would it be and why?
How about a movie? Star Wars. I’d be part of the rebel alliance and fight to defeat the Imperialists and Darth Vader. I think flying an X-wing fighter would be pretty cool. [Editors note: It’s Star Wars, so of course we’ll allow it!]
Where is the best place you’ve traveled? Or where would you like to visit?
I’d really like to go on an African Safari. It would be absolutely incredible to see the animals.
You have to wear a t-shirt with just one word on it for an entire year. What word would that word be, and why?
Focus. I have a shirt with the word on it and wear it quite often. I like to wear it so our students can see it and help them stay “focus”-ed on their success.
Share a fact about you that might surprise people to learn.
I’m trying to complete my dissertation for my doctorate. I’m a retired police officer with over 20 years of experience. I also have solar panels on my house and love them.
What job have you held (besides ECC) that was the most fun, interesting, or difficult? Explain why.
ECC and Elgin PD had an agreement several years ago for an Elgin police officer to patrol the campus. That was me! So, I was the police and taught at ECC. It was an amazing experience. I was able to help people with both of my passions by being the police and an instructor.
Name someone you admire and explain why.
My brother, Mark. He has taught me so much about life; I could write a book. I’m very thankful to have him in my life.
What was your most valuable life lesson?
Life goes by fast.
Complete this sentence: “I enjoy working at ECC because … “
I get to make a positive difference for the students, the community, and myself every day.