For criminal justice instructor, Richard Los, an important part of his curriculum is promoting a healthy approach to dealing with people both in and out of the criminal justice system. He believes that in order to accomplish such, showing compassion is crucial.

“It doesn’t matter who they are or what they’ve done. I’ve just treated people that I’ve met the same way I wanted to be treated,” said Los. “It’s not up to me to be the judge.”  

Los began his journey toward criminal justice after joining the National Guard as a teen in 1966. In pursuit of his lifelong dream of becoming a police officer, Los  found it difficult to adjust to the demands and structure of the Police Academy.

Over the next decade, Los went on to endure an everlasting fight for his education and dream, eventually receiving a master’s in criminal justice and  becoming an officer with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. He also became a model, worked as an actor on various projects and sold several screenplays.

After holding  many different titles, Los also became a member of the Aerial Helicopter Team with the LAPD — eventually landing himself a job as an instructor at the Los Angeles Police Academy.

Speaking on his preference of the various roles he has assumed, Los expressed that his favorite jobs have been those in education.

“I love teaching more than writing scripts,” Los said.

This revelation would bring Los to Utah as an educator at Brigham Young University. After teaching at BYU, Los applied for a job at UVU, hoping to teach from a practical standpoint to his future students.  Los stated that the overall environment of UVU was more preferable to that of BYU.

While he loves what he does, Los stated that the most challenging part of being an educator is continually having to improve his lectures and classes.“UVU has more of a practical focus for its students,” said Los. “It’s just more student-oriented.”

Madison Boyd, who is a student of Los, said that what he enjoys most about his class with Los is his incorporation of personal experiences into his teaching.

“He’s fun and understanding, but makes you think and work,” said Boyd.

Another one of his students, Aiden Coronado, said that Los is very interactive. He added that Los shows pictures and videos, and uses real world examples while teaching.

Coronado said, “This is my favorite class.”

Some of Los’ achievements include commendations from the Los Angeles Sheriff Department (LASD) and the Army National Guard, as well as certifications for Basic and Intermediate Peace Officer Standards and Training. Additionally, he ranked first in his academy cadet in his class at the LASD.

Photo courtesy of UVU Employee Professional Page

Correction:

This article was corrected on Oct. 8, 2018. Previous versions misidentified Richard Los as a retired LAPD officer when in reality he is a retired LA county sheriff. It also misstated that he joined the national guard in 1996; he joined in 1966.

Marie Tyre
Marie Tyre is a Creative Writing major at Utah Valley University. She keeps two cats who can sit, stay, stand, laydown, and rollover on command. She is an avid traveler, foodie, and Pool player who has attended nationals. Additionally, her favorite hobbies include crocheting, reading, writing, eating and sleeping every chance she has. Currently, she works as a drill sergeant to at-risk teens.