Carlaise DeVeaux graduated from TTC in 2003 with an associate degree in legal assisting. She is currently the domestic violence program coordinator for the City of Charleston Police Department.
Would you say that your experience at Trident Technical College "changed your life?"
Yes, I would say that my experience at TTC changed my life. TTC provided me with a strong foundation that I used to continue my education. The classes that I took at Trident Technical College were both rewarding and challenging. During my tenure at TTC, I met students and teachers that I will never forget. I am still friends with several of the students that I met while I attended TTC. Trident Technical College gave me the four-year college "feel" without actually being at a university.
Why did you initially decide to enroll at Trident Technical College?
I initially decided to enroll at TTC because I was not quite ready to go to a four-year institution. I am the product of a single mother and the oldest of three children. I knew that I wanted to, and had to, go to college, but I also did not want to become a financial burden for my mother. She couldn't afford to support my education, and I wanted to work as much as I could to help her out. I also realized the amount of money that I could save if I completed the general courses for a bachelor's degree at TTC instead of taking all of the courses at a four-year institution.
What were the primary factors that affected your academic success at TTC?
The primary factors that affected my academic success at TTC included teachers who were available to answer additional questions if I had any and participating in study groups.
Did you receive a scholarship while you were enrolled at TTC? If so, what impact did this have?
I received several scholarships while I was enrolled at TTC! This had a tremendous impact on my success. The extra money helped me to buy a car which was a necessity because I traveled to school from Edisto Island. The scholarship support also provided me a small financial cushion that enabled me to not have to work as much at times.
Can you describe the work you do as the domestic violence program coordinator for the City of Charleston Police Department?
In this position, I serve as a victim's advocate. Until recently, I also participated in various community outreach activities enabling me to educate the community about domestic violence and sexual assault. As a victim's advocate, I accompany victims of domestic violence and sexual assault to court, explain legal proceedings to them, prepare them for these proceedings, advocate for their rights that are afforded to them by the federal government and assist them with preparing legal forms, etc.
Do you feel TTC prepared you well for success in your current job?
TTC absolutely prepared me to be successful in my current position. Because of the education that I gained at TTC, I am competent in the operation of the legal system and understand the jargon used. I am able to comfort and assist a victim who may not be familiar with this terminology. Courts and the legal system can be very intimidating to someone who has never had to endure the process, but it definitely helps if the person has an advocate by his or her side that understands the process and is able to explain things in general terms.
Where do you see yourself five years from now?
Five years from now, I see myself continuing to assist victims of crime in the capacity of an advocate. Each day, I strive to do something just a little better or learn something new so that I can provide the best service possible and uphold the duty that I owe to these victims.
Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
In February 2011, I was awarded a special commendation for outstanding service provided to victims of crime by Chief G. Mullen of the City of Charleston Police Department. In April 2011, I was awarded the Dr. Sid Katz Award for being an outstanding service provider by People Against Rape.