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What state and federal jobs become available with a degree in criminal justice?

Question by Frankiefrank: What state and federal jobs become available with a degree in criminal justice?
I’m intrested in obtaining a degree in criminal justice but I have recently heard that it is nearly impossible to get a good(well paying, benefits etc.) job with just a degree in criminal justice. If this true what else should I minor in? If any of you have a degree in criminal justice and have a state or federal job what would you have done differently in college to get a better job? I was thinking about taking muy thai or some other fighting class just for the experience. Any help anyone has would be great, thanks.

Best answer:

Answer by Jan Luv
having a degree of any kind does not mean that you can or will find a job in that field.

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2 comments for “What state and federal jobs become available with a degree in criminal justice?

  1. Lori M
    August 7, 2014 at 5:15 pm

    Widen your carree choices is something you should defiantly do! I am a senior now will graduate next year with my BS in Criminal Justice w/emphasis in Forensic Psychology then I’m going on to do my Masters in Psychology the two can help me expand on my career Field and be very helpful in either Field I choose!

  2. Sean B.
    August 7, 2014 at 6:05 pm

    I have a degree in Criminal Justice and Political Science. I also have a few friends from college with CJ degrees. I’ll give you some pros and cons from my perspective, and their perspective, too. First of all, CJ is a social science degree. It does open the door for opportunities because many federal and government jobs just require a bachelor’s degree. To go into forensic science you’ll need to also get a degree in chemistry or biology. At one time, just a minor was sufficient, but that’s becoming a thing of the past. To get advanced jobs you’ll need a master’s degree. This is true for many FBI jobs, but you can get jobs with the secret service, and the ATF. Much of this will also depend on your record. Also, you’ll find jobs as an investigator with insurance companies, probation/parole officer, corrections officer. One way that you’ll benefit from a CJ degree if you become a cop, which is what many CJ majors do, you’ll get a higher starting salary, and you’ll also rise in the ranks to an investigator/detective position because most officers do not have a degree so you’ll stand out. Also, some people get CJ degrees as a pre-law degree to get into law school. All in all, there are jobs out there for a CJ major, and there is also a demand for CJ professors. Now, in my personal opinion I wouldn’t invest in anything higher than a B.S. or B.A. in CJ, unless your goal is to teach at the college/university level. Otherwise, in CJ you can do the same thing with a bachelor’s as with a master’s.

    Now, there are some more things I’ll toss out there that you might want to consider. First of all, you’ll be better served by going to a brick & mortar university. I don’t care what anyone says, these mail-order and on-line degrees from ITT Tech and these other places don’t carry as much clout as a real degree. I have a friend who went against my advice, took a shortcut and did ITT Tech and her degree isn’t being recognized. Okay, there are several relative minors you can look at, like political science, psychology, sociology, chemistry, and several others. You mentioned higher pay, and it’s really hard to say that one profession always pays higher than others, because there is overlap. I will tell you that if you don’t know for sure what you want to do, try to get a degree either in business or some type of engineering. These are both degrees that give flexibility. Overall, if you want to get a degree to improve your fiancial status you should focus on degrees that are quantitatively oriented rather than qualitative or liberal arts/social sciences. Both of my undergrads are social science degrees, but I’m currently earning a MBA. I tell people I spent lots of money for liberal arts to open my mind, now I’m going to get a degree that will fill my wallet. If you’re pretty good in math and science, I’d recommend getting a degree in something like accounting, business, computer science, CIS, engineering, physics, or something in the medical field. If going into law, I’d recommend specializing in international law because there’s a demand for those lawyers. However, trial lawyers are a dime a dozen and many lawyers are driving cabs for a living. If I had it to do over I would have majored in Accounting and then went straight and got my MBA. Good luck to you, and as long as you get a degree you’ll be competitive if you make good grades. Many people out there that can’t get jobs made poor grades or majored in something they wasn’t cut out for to start with. If you get a real degree it will pay off no matter what your major.

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