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Faculty Profile: Tim Palmbach

Release Date:
10/8/2009 1:55 PM
How long have you taught at UNH and what courses do you teach?
I started as a student in 1978 and I began teaching part-time in 1990. I then became a Practitioner in Residence in 1999 and joined the faculty full-time in 2004. In addition to my duties as Department Chair, I teach forensic science classes for both graduate and undergraduate students and also co-teach an Honors Program course. The courses I commonly teach are Advanced Crime Scene Analysis, Physical Methods with Lab, and Seminar in Forensic Science.
What experience do you bring from the professional field into the classroom?
In 1994, I retired from State of Connecticut Department of Public Safety with 22 years service. I retired with the rank of Major in the Connecticut State Police. The majority of my assignments were with the Crime Scene Major Crime Squad and the Forensic Science Laboratory. My last five years with the Department I served as Director of the Forensic Science Laboratory as well Commanding Officer for Division of Scientific Services.
What is your education background?
I received Bachelor’s degrees in Forensic Science and Chemistry from the University of New Haven. I continued on with my education at UNH and obtained a Master’s degree in Forensic Science with a Criminalistics concentration. While working for the State of Connecticut, I obtained a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from the University of Connecticut.
How would you describe your role as an advisor and mentor?
By far, one of the most rewarding and enjoyable experiences at UNH is as an academic advisor and mentor. I am very grateful for the value of mentors in my life, such as the gift Dr. Lee gave me as a mentor for the past 30 years. I enjoy helping students push themselves to their fullest academic potential and hopefully provide them with a sound foundation in both theory and practice so that they may become significant contributors to the greater forensic science community.
What are some fun facts about you?
I love spending time on the water, skiing, wake boarding, fishing, whatever. My greatest source of joy comes from my family. I have two kids in college, and a third child still in high school. Therefore, I feel that I relate very well to college students.
What advice would you give to parents of prospective students?
Preparation is everything. Forensic science is a demanding, academically rigorous program. Success in our program requires a solid high school graduate who pushed themselves to take science and math courses throughout their high school years. In addition, students and parents need to really investigate colleges. There are numerous options and unfortunately many programs are not at the requisite depth and quality to properly prepare a student for a successful career in forensic science. At a minimum, make sure you know something about the professors who will actually teach and mold the student. Demand quality! Finally, relax! College should be one of the very best times in an individual’s life. Life has the capacity to provide more than enough pressure. Let this be a life long positive experience.