Once you graduate high school, the questions about what you are going to do with your life will start coming fast and furious from all angles. There’s no way to get around it. Grabbing that diploma is now just seen as the first step, and today’s young people are expected to have it all figured out. But what if you’re not sure what you want to do with your life? There are hundreds of directions you could take, but while debating the pros and cons of all of them make sure you leave some room to consider a career in criminal justice. This is an incredibly challenging, rewarding and well-respected career path, and studying criminal justice in school can set you up for all sorts of opportunities. Not yet convinced? Here are five reasons you should consider pursuing a career in criminal justice.
First and foremost, you’ll be making a real difference in other people’s lives. There’s nothing worse than heading into a career that’s basically focused on pushing papers around a desk, with no real concept of what you’re doing to move your own career forward or better the world in any way. Criminal justice will never be like that. You could end up as a detective, helping to make the world a safer place, or a probation officer, assisting someone who has made a wrong turn in trying to get their life back on track. Those are just two examples of many, but the one thing they all have in common is making a major difference in the world, and in the lives of those in your community.
You can also expect a career in criminal justice to keep you on your toes. It may not always be as exciting as the cop shows you watch on television, but there is a kernel of truth to the subjects they cover each night of the week. Although your criminal justice degree can take you towards any number of careers, each one of them requires a large skill set, a firm grasp on the legal system and current trends in governance, and often some amount of physical risk. Put all of that together, and you’ll rarely be bored.
Another great aspect of the criminal justice career is that you can take it in many different directions. Most people think of police officers when they hear criminal justice, but that’s only the most obvious application. Think about the analysts in the crime lab, the forensic psychologists, the professional bounty hunters and even the secret service agents who protect the President of the United States. Every one of those professions and many more come under the criminal justice heading.
You’ll also find in a criminal justice career that there is always room for advancement. Most positions in this field have a rigorous system of departments and managers. While there is some amount of politics involved, if you work hard and are good at your job you’ll eventually move your way up the ladder. That means you’ll have little risk of ever hitting a professional ceiling, allowing you to grow mentally and financially the entire time.
Speaking of financial growth, these careers will almost always provide you with solid earning potential. You don’t even have to necessarily go to the most prestigious of universities.Grab UC’s criminal justice degree online and you can still end up making quite a comfortable living, even in an entry-level position. Most criminal justice career paths also include a solid benefits package, and a pension when you are ready to retire. It’s steady, predictable and will allow you to raise your family with comfort and security. It may not be the most obvious perk of a criminal justice career, but it’s sure an important one.