Criminal justice is an interesting degree with many fascinating and challenging courses, and after achieving a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice, the challenges and opportunities can continue. With a wealth of career paths open to graduates from law enforcement to homeland security and many more, the possibilities unlocked by this degree are endless.
Many of those with criminal justice degrees continue to work in criminal law and in the criminal justice system. Opportunities include administrative positions such as a court clerk, maintaining the court records, while others look to use their skills in the legal profession, either as a paralegal or using the degree as the first step towards further legal training as a criminal lawyer. A criminal justice degree is also an excellent qualification for those wanting to work with offenders in roles such as prison officer and probation officer.
A criminal justice degree will help pave the way for an investigative career, including that of a private investigator. Formal qualifications are not strictly necessary to become a police officer, but a criminal justice degree can help give a head start on a police career, while the scientifically minded may use their degree as a starting point for a career in crime scene investigation. The FBI is also likely to look favorably on applicants holding a criminal justice degree, offering opportunities in intelligence and law enforcement.
A degree is also an option for those wanting to work with young people, such as working as a youth offending team officer in a vital role to help prevent further crime and support the young offender through the criminal justice system. The social care sector is another path that some degree holders take, with many opportunities for tackling the challenges that young people may face from antisocial behavior to drug use.
A number of US government departments have career paths ideal for those with criminal justice degrees. These include:
- Homeland Security, including working in immigration and customs enforcement, or even the Secret Service, providing protection for national leaders and at events of national importance.
- The Marshals Service, with protecting the federal judiciary, transporting federal prisoners, and apprehending federal fugitives just some of the responsibilities.
- The Fish and Wildlife Service is just one of the agencies that employ fish and game wardens – another possible career choice for holders of a criminal justice degree.
Many universities offer criminal justice degrees, but a prolonged period of study and a move to a university campus is not always practical or desirable. Another option is to study for the degree online. Central Christian College of Kansas is one place that offers the chance to study for a criminal justice degree online. With multiple start dates throughout the year, students work on one six-week course at a time on subjects from forensics to crisis management, all taught by instructors with real-life policing experience.
With so many careers unlocked by a criminal justice degree and different ways to achieve the qualification, anyone considering this as a degree choice should not hesitate to find out more.