The National Center on Forensics is a multi-organizational effort funded by the National Institute of Justice that focuses on increasing the forensic workforce and increasing scientific knowledge resources for the legal system. The Center’s three main goals are to:
- Provide medico-legal learning opportunities for medical students to train as deputy medical examiners/coroners in underserved rural areas.
- Provide forensic science and legal training to prosecutors, judges, and law enforcement.
- Develop opportunities among the designated partners to benefit current and future practitioners in the field.
To determine the needs of the key audiences addressed in these goals, the National Center on Forensics conducted a needs assessment, an interest survey, focus groups, and a large survey. Data from these activities are being used to inform and create tools and resources targeting the needs identified and in the areas that will have the most impact.
The Center is funded under a cooperative agreement from the National Institute of Justice awarded to George Mason University. To fulfill the goals of the Center, George Mason University has partnered with the National Association of Attorneys General, the American Society of Clinical Pathology, the Montana Department of Forensic Science, the University of Washington Schools of Medicine and Law, and the Montana County Attorneys Association.