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NLU Criminal Justice Jobs

Criminal Justice Jobs

From police officers to parole officers to cyberforensics, the world of criminal justice contains a multitude of possibilities for the graduate interested in social justice. Many who pursue careers in criminal justice enter the law enforcement, security or corrections fields. Some of the popular career paths today are in terrorism response, homeland security, criminal investigation, transportation security and forensics.

ProEducation & Certification

Special certifications and training can enhance professional preparation. (Learn more about a B.A. in Criminal Justice.) Post-graduation requirements vary depending on federal, state, county and municipal governments. At the same time, criminal justice’s focus on the study of human nature, societal conduct and institutional responses to antisocial behavior leads naturally to the fields of counseling, education and healthcare.

Criminal Justice Career Outlook

The BLS projects job growth in police officers, detectives, probation officers and correctional treatment specialists to be 4 percent from 2014 to 2024.1,2 This is a slower than average growth rate for this time period. The hiring outlook for police and detectives is generally positive, with government spending causing variation by place and year.3 Growth in probation and corrections officer jobs is often tied to given state and local government funding for corrections, particularly probation and parole systems.4 Median pay was $49,360 for probation officers and correctional treatment specialists, while police officers and detectives had a median salary of $60,270 in 2015.

Popular Criminal Justice Careers

Criminal justice careers can cover a number of roles, including:

  • Police officers
  • Forensic scientists
  • Security specialists in business settings
  • Juvenile justice caseworkers
  • Paralegals
  • Correctional officers
  • Probation officers
  • Private investigators

Police and Detectives

One of the most visible careers in criminal justice is that of police officer. Police officers’ main duty is to protect people and their property. Detectives have the more specific role of conducting fact-finding and collecting evidence in the investigation of potential crimes.

Police and detectives can specialize (horseback, motorcycle, canine corps, homicide) or have different duties depending on what level of the government they serve. For example, at the local/state levels, there are uniformed police officers, state police officers, transit and railroad police, sheriffs/deputy sheriffs, and detectives and criminal investigators. At the federal level, options exist within the FBI, DEA, Secret Service, Federal Air Marshals and U.S. Border Patrol, depending on the type of law enforcement preferred.

Police officers and detectives are typically responsible for the following types of law enforcement: Responding to calls, patrolling, monitoring traffic (and issuing citations), securing warrants/arresting, compiling detailed reports, and testifying in court. They also can provide first aid to accident victims when first to arrive as emergency responders.5

Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists

After people have been apprehended for crimes, they may require authorities to monitor or assist them as they rejoin society. This is where probation officers and correctional treatment specialists do their work. People in the corrections area try to smooth the path to reintegration for offenders; their job is to help treat people or train them in the requisite skills for successful rehabilitation.

Probation officers and correctional treatment specialists have myriad responsibilities: Determining the best course of rehabilitation, meeting with and evaluating probationers, providing resources, addressing substance abuse and maintaining detailed reports, among others.6

Probation officers and correctional treatment specialists work with probationees who are given probation instead of jail time, who are still in prison, or who have been released from prison.

This line of work can be further broken into the specializations of parole officers and pretrial services officers. The former work with parolees to modify behavior in the hopes of preventing repeat offenses, and the latter assess the fitness of pretrial defendants to return to the community before trial, respectively.

Careers in criminal justice best suit the socially conscious individual who can apply his/her passion for helping integrate reformed citizens with the larger law-abiding world. These types of careers are also attractive to those who want to deter crime and defend equality as a social good. For more on what attracts people to this field, check out “What Is Criminal Justice?

Source References [+]

1. “Police and Detectives.” December 17, 2015.

2. “Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists.” December 17, 2015.

3. “Police and Detectives: Job Outlook.” December 17, 2015.

4. “Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists: Job Outlook.” December 17, 2015.

5. “Police and Detectives: What Police and Detectives Do.” December 17, 2015.

6. “What Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists Do.” December 17, 2015.


    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

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    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

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    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

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    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

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    Established in 1988 and located in one of Tampa's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to its classrooms, the National Louis University Tampa Regional Center features a computer lab, student lounges, and conference room.

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