Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice

Bloomsburg University's criminal justice program prepares students for a career in the criminal justice and legal systems, as well as entry into graduate or law school. Through a career-focused curriculum, students learn the history and philosophy of the legal and criminal justice systems, while exploring the latest trends in law and society with an emphasis on race, ethnicity, culture and gender.

The criminal justice faculty are strong academics who have practical experience in law and criminal justice professions, which they share in the classroom and through advising. In addition, the faculty are active researchers, as well as expert sources for local, state and national media.

  • Rodger Benefiel, assistant professor
  • Scott Duncan, assistant professor
  • Eric Lesneskie, associate professor
  • Ali Ozdogan, assistant professor
  • Kelly Roth, assistant professor
  • Leo Barrile, professor emeritus
      Available upon request as a tutor for criminal justice students

McCormick Center

Department Chairperson
  Chris Podeschi, Ph.D. |
Department Secretary
  Gwen Stancavage |

Department of Sociology, Social Work,
and Criminal Justice

2105 McCormick Center
Fax: 570-389-2019


Robert “Bob” Moschgat

Dr. Robert Moschgat Award

Dr. Robert “Bob” Moschgat, who passed away unexpectedly July 25, 2020, was a fixture in Bloomsburg University's criminal justice program for seven years. He was often the first professor criminal justice students interacted with, as he regularly taught Introduction to Criminal Justice. Bob will be forever remembered for his deep devotion to his students, his academic expertise, and his effervescent personality.

Bob had a way of making students feel comfortable and important while encouraging them to achieve academic success. Because his unwavering, passionate support for students led to so many students citing his influence on their experience at BU, the annual award given to the top graduating criminal justice student each spring will be known as the Dr. Robert Moschgat Award.

The Husky Difference

Criminal Justice Ranking

CJ program ranked seventh in PA

BU’s criminal justice program is ranked seventh in Pennsylvania by Zippia, a job — career-seeking website — up from 10th a year ago.

Zippia’s looked at the data on the institutions of higher learning in Pennsylvania to determine which programs offer the best career opportunities for criminal justice majors. BU was the only Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education institution in the top 10.

Criminal Justice Research

Research into fatal police shootings

A prominent issue in society today is fatal police shootings. This issue inspired Hannah Geczi to take a deeper look into the issue and see how many of these shootings are misconstrued and are actually cases of suicide by cop.

“We have been studying police-involved shootings for the last two years," Geczi t said. "My participation in this group sparked my interest in learning more about the phenomenon of suicide by cop.”

Criminal Justice Graduates

OCPD finds value in BU grads

Only five full-time officers were hired in 2018 by the Ocean City Police Department in Maryland. Three of them were BU criminal justice graduates. Nikki Stanziale spent two summers as a seasonal officer and believes her BU education was a big advantage.

“When I returned to Ocean City after graduation, I knew I didn’t want to leave,” said Stanziale, adding that some of the material the police academy is teaching are topics already covered in BU’s criminal justice classes.