Dr. Krystal Hans is an assistant professor of forensic entomology in the Department of Entomology. Dr. Hans teaches courses on forensic science and forensic entomology, including the “Forensic Investigation” (ENTM 22810) course, where a major component of the course is a cold case project. The cold case project focuses on accessing information about an unresolved case and trains students to engage with empathy as advocates for victims while developing skills in research, digital and information literacy, submission of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, designing infographics, and public speaking. Students produce digital case files and infographics to display the information about the case they research, providing a summary presentation at the end of the semester. During the fall 2022 semester, the students focused on unresolved cases in Indiana and attended the Cold Case Symposium that was cohosted by Dr. Hans to learn from families and victim advocates about cases that need support and from organizations dedicated to helping families impacted by the tragic loss of a loved one. Dr. Hans has partnered with Project: Cold Case, a nonprofit organization that was established to serve families who have lost loved ones to homicide after seeing a need for more support. The organization works closely with surviving family members and law enforcement to educate and assist while also memorializing their loved one. Project: Cold Case presented lectures to the students in the fall of 2022, offered guidance for cold case research, and will have a more active role in future versions of the cold case project. The infographics and materials designed by Purdue students will be on display at the 2023 Cold Case Symposium to raise awareness of the unresolved cases in Indiana, generate public interest, and offer support for local families.
"Warming Up Cold Cases with Dr. Krystal Hans,"
Purdue Journal of Service-Learning and International Engagement: Vol. 10
Available at: https://docs.lib.purdue.edu/pjsl/vol10/iss1/9