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What To Do With Your Criminal Justice Degree Many opportunities await those with a bachelor's degree in criminal justice

If you’re interested in pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, you are on your way to protecting people in your community, maintaining peace and order, and ensuring that citizens enjoy their Constitutionally-granted freedoms and rights.

You can earn your Criminal Justice bachelor’s degree online or on campus at National Louis University, in order to prepare yourself for the many facets of this rewarding field.

“My degree allowed me to distinguish myself amongst my peers. It also provided me with valuable knowledge I was able to expand on at the Police Academy.”

—Aggie Wajda

Criminal Justice careers generally fall under one of the three main segments of the field: law enforcement, the court system and the correctional system.

Law enforcement

Law enforcement careers include becoming a police officer or security guard. A career in policing allows you to use your wits and physical agility to make a meaningful contribution to keeping your community safe. Within the scope of policing careers, there are also opportunities for promotion to detective, sergeant, lieutenant and captain.

Though a bachelor’s degree may not always be required to become a police officer, it can give you an edge over the competition. NLU Criminal Justice alum and police officer, Aggie Wajda, said, “My degree allowed me to distinguish myself amongst my peers. It also provided me with valuable knowledge I was able to expand on at the Police Academy.”

Security guards can also make a meaningful contribution to keeping people and property safe, and the field offers opportunities to advance to security manager.

Court system

The court system offers career paths such as bailiff and probation officer. Bailiffs facilitate the process of trials, assist the judge and jury and maintain order and safety in the courtroom. They play a key role in the administration of justice.

Likewise, probation officers guide defendants through their sentences of probation. They aim to keep them on constructive paths and away from lawbreaking.

Correctional system

Within the correctional system, correctional officers maintain order in jails, prisons and detention facilities.

Earning your Criminal Justice bachelor’s degree online or on-campus also enables you to pursue further study to prepare for other careers. For example, a bachelor’s degree and a paralegal certificate will generally qualify a candidate to work as a paralegal and assist attorneys, for example. Your Criminal Justice bachelor’s degree plus a master’s degree in psychology or behavioral science can prepare you to work as a jury consultant, devising and applying strategies to make the best impression on juries.

A Criminal Justice degree makes an excellent launching pad into law school, which would prepare you for a career as an attorney, public defender or judge.

All of these professions require courage, intelligence and a desire to serve one’s community. Regardless of which one you decide to pursue, you’ll be using your Criminal Justice degree to build a rewarding career that will help your fellow citizens live in peace and safety.

Find out more about your bachelor’s in Criminal Justice at NLU.

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