Forensic Science Seminar

The Department of Forensic Science hosts a weekly seminar series open to the public each semester featuring presentations by faculty, crime laboratory staff, students, and visiting lecturers.

Forensic science students can enroll in one credit of FRSC 570: Forensic Science Seminar to attend the entire series and receive academic credit.


2:00 p.m. to 3:15 p.m. EDT

Spring 2024 Presentations
Date Speaker Topic
Jan. 24

Professor Kelly Knight
Associate Professor - George Mason University

"My Journey from VCU Student to Forensic Scientist to Professor”

Jan. 31

Karen Lynne Shafer
Master Digital Forensic Examiner - Federal Bureau of Investigation
Adjunct Faculty - VCU
“Digital Forensics: Solving Crime a Byte at a Time”
Feb. 7 Vivian Chern Shnaidman, MD
Jersey Forensic Consulting, LLC
Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry - Rutgers Medical School
"A Crash Course in Forensic Psychiatry"
Feb. 14 Sabra Jones, PhD
Regional Toxicology Liaison, NHTSA Region 5 - Regional Toxicology Liaison Project
“A Career in Forensic Toxicology: Dedication to Service"
Feb. 28 Victor "Jake" Olesen, Ph.D.
Special Agent Digital Forensics Examiner - Federal Bureau of Investigation
“Freenet Forensics, Tales from the Dark Web”
Mar. 13 Chastyn J. Smith
Virginia Commonwealth University - PhD Candidate
“Redesign, Evaluation, and Validation of a Commercially Viable High-Resolution Melt
Based Mixture Screening Tool”
Mar. 20 Heather Barkholtz, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Forensic Toxicology - University of Wisconsin-Madison
“Trials and Tribulations: Human Subjects Drug Impairment Research”
Mar. 27 Abby Wester
Virginia Commonwealth University Graduate Student - M.S.F.S. Candidate
“Evaluation of Charcoal Strip Method Extraction Efficiency Under Varying Conditions of
Fire Debris Samples”
Apr. 3 Dr. Eduardo G. de Campos
Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry and Fermentation Sciences - Appalachian State University
“Novel Psychoactive Substances: Trends, Challenges and Analytical Strategies”
Apr. 10 Dr. Katelynn Perrault Uptmor
Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Principal Investigator, Nontargeted Separations Laboratory Department of Chemistry - William Mary
“Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC) as a forensic
investigative tool”
Apr. 17 Alison Galloway
Professor Emerita - UC Santa Cruz
“Thermal Damage on Human Remains”
Apr. 24 Brandy Lyttle
Virginia Commonwealth University Graduate Student - M.S.F.S. Candidate
“Development of a Molecular Assay for the Detection of Natural Cannabis in
Commercially Available CBD Products”