The Senator Tommy Burks Victim Assistance Academy

The Academy is conducted by the Tennessee Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence in partnership with the UTC Criminal Justice Program. It is held every summer. 


The purpose of this Academy is to provide basic level training to victim advocates. The 40 hour curriculum will encompass a variety of subjects including: Victims’ Compensation, Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Child Victimization, Elder Abuse, Rural Victims, Hate Crimes, Collaboration, and Cultural Competency.


Can I get college credits?

Yes.  UTC students may attend and receive 3 hours undergraduate or graduate credit.    Others attending the academy may choose to be admitted to the university and attend for credit as well.  Additional course work is required for students getting academic credit. It will will be done via distance learning during the first short summer session at UTC.    Also, CEU credit through The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, P.O.S.T. credit hours, and National Organization for Victim Assistance provisional credentialing are available upon completion of the 40 hour training course (for additional fees).


When is the Academy?

The next Academy will be held from June 6-10, 2016.   The Academy will be held on the UTC campus.

What does it cost?

There is no fee for attending the academy. Normal tuition rates apply for students taking the course for college credits. 

Why attend?

The Academy will address issues specific to Tennessee crime victims and offer opportunities for people who are fairly new to the field of victim advocacy to learn from experts and each other. Attendees will be able to expand their knowledge and skills in Tennessee law and advocacy issues.  Participants in the Academy may also be eligible to receive national provisional advocate credentials through the National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA) for an additional fee.  This certification is increasingly being recognized as an important credential for entry level victim advocacy work nationwide.

Who should attend?

The Academy is designed for individuals who have less than two years experience assisting victims of crime and demonstrate a commitment to victim service. The training is appropriate for individuals working in victim advocacy programs, prosecutor’s offices, law enforcement, probation, corrections, domestic and sexual violence programs, child advocacy centers, and other victim service agencies.  It also is appropriate for students who wish to pursue careers related to victim advocacy. The Academy will be limited to 50 participants and you must be admitted prior to registering for classes.

How to Apply:

Applications are available ONLY for UTC students at this time.  Applications for other participants will be available soon.  The Coalition manages the applications for non UTC students/employees.  Once they have notified me that they are ready to accept applications, I will post the link on this web page.  If you have questions in the interim you may contact Dr. Helen  Eigenberg.


Powerpoint presentations from the 2015 Academy.