Sevier County Investigator finds an Exciting Career by Staying Local
May 14, 2020
Brian Hankins is a Sevier County and Lockesburg, Arkansas resident who graduated from UA Cossatot. At an early age, Brian envisioned himself working for local law enforcement. Today he works for the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office as an investigator, choosing to help and serve those in his community.
Hankins chose to pursue this career path after graduating from Horatio High School in 2004. Shortly after graduating high school, he began working as a jailer and as a dispatcher. From 2005 to 2008, Brian chose to work as a welder, but eventually discovered that his passion remained in law enforcement.
In 2008, Brian returned to working as a jailer. In hopes of one day moving up in law enforcement, he decided to take college classes. Even though a degree wasn’t a requirement at his agency, he knew that a college education could be beneficial.
In 2011, Hankins started his college career at UA Cossatot. In two years, he graduated from UA Cossatot with an Associate of Arts degree, a degree that is designed to transfer to a four-year university.
Brian Hankins said, “I chose to go to school at UA Cossatot because it was local, and I did not have to move away. I took classes at the De Queen Campus and online. There were several things that I liked about UA Cossatot. It was close to home, the staff were friendly and excellent, and I also really liked the fact that I was able to pursue my basic college classes in a small-town atmosphere.”
After achieving his associate’s degree at UA Cossatot, Brian chose to continue his education online through Arkansas Tech University. In May of 2015, he graduated from Arkansas Tech University with a Bachelor’s of Professional Studies degree concentrated in Criminal Justice.
After getting into law enforcement, Brian began to work small cases and enjoyed the experience. He immediately set a goal to become an investigator. In 2017, his goal became a reality when Sheriff Robert Gentry promoted him to the role of investigator for Sevier County.
Brian says that he enjoys being able to solve cases, and one of the things he likes about his job the most is getting the chance to help return stolen property to a victim.
When asked about his education, Brian said, “I would absolutely recommend UA Cossatot. I think the college can give everyone a great experience, and I highly recommend it.”
In the spring of 2019, Brian worked as an adjunct instructor at UA Cossatot, where he taught criminal justice classes. As more students enroll in the program, he plans to teach again.
Hankins said, “UA Cossatot is a great place to pursue a criminal justice degree. People that are interested in seeking careers in the criminal justice field need education and experience. Plus, the majority of the bigger agencies at the state level and the federal level require both. I would advise all local college students to stay home and take classes at UA Cossatot, at least for the first year or two. It is a great college that offers excellent benefits.”
At the age of 33, Brian enjoys his work and having the opportunity to serve the community that he has always called home. In his downtime, he enjoys hunting, fishing, being in the outdoors, and spending time with his three children: Bentley, Canton, and Emersyn.
To learn more about the criminal justice program or other degrees and certificates offered at UA Cossatot, please contact UA Cossatot’s Student Services department at firstname.lastname@example.org.