Criminal justice is held up as a Swiss Army Knife of college degrees, opening up a wide variety of careers. However, many are ignorant of those job opportunities. What can you do with a criminal justice degree? Let’s review the career options you have, both with only an entry level degree in criminal justice and advanced coursework.
Pre-Law with More Flexibility
Pre-law degrees are almost a joke if you’re unable to get into law school. Conversely, with a degree in criminal justice, you’re equally prepared for law school but you’re able to find work in the court system as an administrative assistant or counselor.
Security guards with a criminal justice degree are more respected and better protected legally than a bouncer without such education. You could work as a bailiff in the courts or court clerk. You could also become a mediator, essentially working as a lawyer without spending as many years in school. If you earn a master’s degree from the University of Cincinnati Online, you’ll be given priority placement in any court-related job short of prosecutor or judge. In a few states where judges don’t have to graduate from law school, you can run for judgeships based on your criminal justice credentials. Or you could simply take the exam to become a paralegal and earn as much as many lawyers without the law school debt.
Many states require at least one year’s worth of college courses before you can become a police officer. You’ll typically be paid more if you have a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from a school like the University of Cincinnati. Then you can do more than simply be a probation officer or correctional officer. Another option is civil service, whether you’re working for the FBI, DEA, Secret Service or TSA. Or become a state trooper working the highways. If you are leaning toward protecting the planet, work as a fish and game warden. If you want to protect the homeland but don’t want to go overseas in the military, become a customs enforcement agent.
Private investigators can find work in a variety of industries. Work for a family law firm to find out whether or not a spouse is really unemployed or whether or not they are supervising the children properly after school.
Or work for insurance companies investigating potential cases of fraud. These cases range from suspected faked car accidents to people pretending to be disabled. Serious cases include suspected arson and drug abuse. Conversely, you could work for the postal service as an investigator/inspector. These individuals are involved in investigations of mail theft, vandalism, mail fraud and identity theft.
Another option is working in conjunction with social services. You have the necessary skills to verify that children live in attendance zones for a school district or you may work as an interviewer and investigator for suspected cases of neglect and abuse along with social workers.
A criminal justice degree opens up a number of court related jobs and positions in law enforcement. Look at all the possible avenues that criminal justice can lead you through and pick one that fits your preferences and aptitudes.