The Criminal Justice major is a professional program heavily grounded in a strong liberal arts base. Through interdisciplinary coursework, students will study all aspects of crime and societal reactions to crime. They will examine political, economic, and cultural patterns that shape definitions and theories of crime and influence the policy choices about how to respond to certain categories of crime. Students will also study social and personal forces that lead to criminal conduct, and analyze the organization and operation of crime control systems. Particular emphasis is placed on the interactions among the many agencies which comprise criminal justice systems and on the relationships between these systems and other facets of society. Emphasis is placed on critical thinking and problem solving throughout the curriculum.
A rigorous academic foundation is combined with practical experience through various applied courses. Students also have an opportunity to complete an internship with a criminal justice agency in their senior year and are required to participate in service learning experiences in several courses.
Graduates find opportunities in the expanding field of criminal justice at the local, state and federal levels, as well as the many private and non-profit organizations which provide services or make policy recommendations to traditional criminal justice agencies. The Criminal Justice B.A. also provides a strong foundation for students pursuing graduate work including law school.