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Course Spotlight: Professional Investigator

Course Spotlight: Professional Investigator

Do you possess excellent observational skills and an analytical mind? If so, a career as a Professional Investigator may be for you.

Private investigation has become a vibrant and intriguing profession. Today, a wide variety of agencies, law firms, insurance companies and government entities rely on savvy investigators who can unearth facts, compile evidence and contribute to the resolution of complex issues. Additionally, the escalation of crime, lack of law enforcement resources, and the need for internal investigations in litigation and corporate security make this a booming and rewarding field.

Taught by Tripp Mitchell, a licensed and certified instructor with more than 20 years of investigative management experience, this dynamic course will prepare you for a career as a professional investigator. We were able to catch up with Tripp to learn more about the program and the industry. Here’s what he had to say:

Instructor Tripp Mitchell

Instructor Tripp Mitchell

Give us a brief overview of the  program.
Students can expect to learn the fundamentals of investigation. This includes, but isn’t limited to, how to conduct an investigation, understanding evidence, and an overview of legal and ethical means of performing investigations. This is a comprehensive course that covers many facets of the investigative process. It begins with the foundation of the investigative process and covers various specific topics such as rules of evidence, interviewing, documentation, report writing, courtroom testimony and other related topics.

There are also several other topics in more specialized areas such as surveillance, domestic and family law, crime scene investigation, insurance investigation, corporate security functions and even executive protection. This course will prepare students to develop a skill set that can transfer into many investigative arenas and build a great résumé.  It also exceeds Georgia’s mandatory training requirements for becoming a licensed private detective.

Why is offering this so important?
In today’s society, the use of investigators has become more prevalent in areas that law enforcement and detectives do not delve in. Areas such as family law investigations, criminal defense, sexual harassment in the workplace, background checks and internal theft are all examples in which professional investigators are needed. These investigators serve the private and corporate sectors as well as attorneys and everyday citizens. The use of investigators in many cases have a direct return on investment when dealing with situations in which fact finding and truth seeking are required before a decision can be made.

Who is the ideal student?
The ideal student is one that has a natural curiosity about how things unfold. Ones that can take time and effort to develop fact patterns and seek the truth. The course is open to anyone that wants to pursue a career in the investigative arena – because it takes the students on a journey from day one of understanding the need and purpose for an investigation to the end game of how to conduct and report their findings.

It’s ideal for those in the corporate and legal fields as well as any entrepreneur that wants to pursue starting a private investigation business or just be successful working under a licensed investigator. Any business or entity that have a need for their employees to perform an investigative function would benefit from the program.

What are some of the most prominent jobs that earning this certificate can lead to?
Corporate America has become one of the larger areas in which investigators are utilized. Insurance companies, financial institutions, internal and professional standards, ethics, workers compensation, and even compliance investigations are all part of that world. Legal investigators that work for civil attorneys and criminal defense are also in high demand.

Where do you see the future of this profession heading?
The future of investigations is endless. As a career investigator, I have seen the use of qualified and professional investigators rise. As law enforcement and government resources focus on more criminal cases and become more and more thin, the use of private sector and internal investigators have become much more prevalent. I truly believe that many internal security departments and organizations will continue to see the value of hiring and utilizing trained professionals to perform investigations and work for their best interest.

In addition, with the increasing crime and civil litigation the legal investigator will maintain a strong presence to assist attorneys in representing their clients and obtaining the verdicts and judgement they deserve.


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