A bachelor of science degree in Criminal Justice from Western New England University will prepare you to take advantage of expanding career opportunities in this diversified and fascinating field. Our courses are taught by award-winning scholars engaged in research across multiple areas of the criminal justice process, as well as practitioners teaching specialized courses in areas such as forensic science, law enforcement, and corrections. Within the major, students enrolling for fall 2019 will have the ability to pursue four Concentrations: Criminal Investigation, Homeland Security and Terrorism, Victim Studies, or Administration of Justice. The program also provides a solid foundation for students who wish to pursue graduate studies.
Why Choose Criminal Justice?
Criminal justice today is much more than law enforcement. Whether working in social services, policing, in a correctional facility, as a court administrator, or in any of the other related fields, criminal justice professionals must possess strong communication skills, including research presentation skills and technical report writing. They must understand current technology, human behavior, and have management skills to advance into roles of increasing responsibility. Criminal justice professionals serve the public interest and must also recognize the importance of upholding the highest ethical and professional standards in their chosen career path.
What Will You Study?
As a CJ major, you will take courses that are designed to provide you with a well-rounded understanding of criminal justice theory, policy, and practice. Students may also pursue courses within our four concentrations. For instance, students interested in the Homeland Security and Terrorism concentration may take classes in Counter-terrorism, Emergency Response Management, and Human Trafficking. Additionally, all CJ students have the opportunity to apply what they learned in relevant internships.
This major provides excellent preparation for careers in law enforcement, corrections, probation and parole, security, court administration, social services, private security, or working with victims of crime.
Clubs & Organizations
Criminal Justice students may have interests in: Alpha Lambda Delta (First-year honor society), Alpha Phi Sigma (Criminal Justice Honor Society), and Criminal Justice Association. Many of our students also participate in varsity and intramural sports, special interest groups, and student government.
Our faculty is unique among Criminal Justice programs as a result of the combination of professional experience and academic proficiency. All of our faculty members have earned a terminal degree (Ph.D. or J.D.). Many have published in respected academic journals and authored books in this field. They range from a police supervisor with a law degree, who is the former director at the Western Massachusetts Municipal Police Training Academy; to a retired Massachusetts State Police investigator; to a former prosecutor; to a gang specialist; to an expert in victimology. All of our adjunct faculty members are accomplished practitioners in their respective professions.
Unique Learning Opportunities
Internships and Field Work
In your junior and senior years, you will have the opportunity to complete up to two internships, working side-by-side with practitioners in various criminal justice-related agencies. Some of the most popular internship sites include federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies; state and federal courts; state and federal probation offices; victim/witness advocate programs; pre-release programs; correctional facilities; state and municipal police training academies; social service agencies; and offices of local criminal attorneys.
Study Abroad: Become a Global Citizen
Today’s workforce needs professionals who see the big picture. The College of Arts and Sciences will help you to become a student of world cultures and histories as they relate to your studies while making valuable contributions in your explorations. Whether you participate in a faculty-led summer seminar course or spend a semester at an international university, the experience will broaden your horizons and help you compete in the global landscape.