Hampstead Officer Adds Degree to Impressive Resume
HAMPSTEAD - Jefferey Grant of Hampstead has worked on and around boats since he was ten years old. He started out working lobster boats and fishing in New Hampshire. The marine industry was the basis for everything he did, even to the point of attending Maine Maritime Academy for his first year of college. He moved to Wilmington, NC in 1992 to pursue better fishing and a longer boating season. He was hired at a Marina in Wrightsville Beach where he started out at the absolute bottom and quickly began running boats up and down the east coast for deliveries, repairs, etc. He also started running gulfstream fishing charters out of Wrightsville Beach.
“I spent several months carrying people all over the US and British Virgin Islands,” he said. “It really was not a bad deal for a 19-year-old kid.”
Taking a closer look at his future and how he wanted to see his career unfold, Grant decided to pursue law enforcement. He put himself through Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET), while working full time. In 1998, he was hired by a local Sheriff’s Office. He was transferred into investigations where he still works today. With an impressive resume and invaluable criminal justice experience, Grant decided the only thing missing was a college degree. He also wanted to obtain his degree to be a role model for his children. So, he enrolled at the University of Mount Olive at Wilmington.
“I continue to drive the importance of a college education into my kids’ heads,” he said. “, I do not want them to be able to say ‘but dad, you did not finish.’”
Grant is on track to graduate in May with his bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and criminology.
“I have gained an immense amount of appreciation for all who have gone back to school to solidify their future,” he said. “I know it can be done. It is a huge step to take yet certainly not unobtainable. I have become a proponent of continuing education with all of the young officers I meet. I explain to them that if I can do it, anyone can. Stop thinking about it and for lack of a better term, pull the trigger and get it done.”
Grant is very grateful to his family, and realizes the sacrifices they all have made.
“My family has been amazingly supportive,” he said. “It has certainly been an interesting journey. My wife is completing graduate school in nursing and my oldest daughter started her first year at Carolina. Thanks to UMO I have become an expert in time management.”
As for the next steps, Grant hopes to spend more of his leisure time fishing, this time for a hobby. He is also contemplating continuing his education so that he might one day be able to teach law enforcement to other officers like himself.
“I cannot continue to do what I do forever,” he noted. “I would hate to let my experience go to waste, when I could help other officers.”
The University of Mount Olive is a private institution rooted in the liberal arts tradition with defining Christian values. The University, sponsored by the Convention of Original Free Will Baptists, has locations in Mount Olive, New Bern, Wilmington, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Research Triangle Park, Washington, Jacksonville, and in Smithfield at Johnston Community College. For more information, visit www.umo.edu.