"If you want to become a part of law enforcement or homeland security, a criminal justice certificate will help you get your foot in the door. The field of criminal justice is an exciting one, and there is always a need for professionals in this area. A criminal justice certificate program gives students an overview of the criminal justice system. If you are already employed, a certificate in criminal justice can help advance your career."
The criminal justice certificate program gives students an introduction to the criminal justice system. Course work in this program includes classes in sociology, criminology and court procedure, as well as how to communicate in a justice environment. Students can also choose to take elective courses. These courses deal with subject matter like juvenile delinquency, community relations, firearms training, terrorism and forensics. The program takes about a year to complete, and is offered at many schools. The University of Wisconsin-Madison, Michigan State University and the University of Virginia are three schools that offer certificate programs on their campuses. If an online program is better suited to your needs, consider Kaplan University, Washington Online Certificate Program and the University of Massachusetts. The University of Massachusetts certificate program requires students to take five courses to complete their certificate program. Criminology, sociology of law and deviance and social order are among the required courses for certificate completion. A 2.0 GPA at completion of the program is required to receive the certificate.
People with this certificate find jobs as legal transcriptionists and private investigators. They work in fields like security management and private security. Jobs for people with a certificate in criminal justice, in the areas of probation and corrections, are increasing at the rate of the national average. If you are considering a job as a private investigator or detective, the growth rate is faster than the national average. The median salary for a probation officer is $39,000 a year. The median salary for law enforcement officials is $45,000.