In 2016, the criminal justice discipline is celebrating 100-years of academic excellence. Criminal justice is celebrating the centennial birthday of formally evolving into a recognized academic discipline of study.
In 1916, August Vollmer persuaded the University of California at Berkley to embrace the concept of organizing police science studies into a recognized academic degree, and paving the way for criminal justice degree to be recognized by postsecondary colleges and universities.
The University of California at Berkley program started a revolution in police science studies and soon other universities such as San Jose State University, Indiana University, University of Washington, and Michigan State University established their own bachelor programs that focused on police science. As the academic foundation was established with police science the disciplined matured into the criminal justice degree path.
The Criminal Justice Discipline Today
Today, there are many criminal justice degree programs offered at several educational levels within higher education.
- Associate degree AS/AA in Criminal Justice
- Bachelors BD/BA in Criminal Justice
- Masters MS/MA in Criminal Justice
- Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Criminal Justice
Today’s criminal justice student has options as to choosing how and when they wish to study. Criminal justice classes and degree programs are offered in the traditional classroom, online, and hybrid platforms. This allows the student to select the learning platform that best suits the students individual learning style and busy schedule.
CriminalJusticePrograms.com is good resource on finding a criminal justice program that fits your needs and educational goals.
Education is the Key for Future Success
August Vollmer recognized that law enforcement officers need to be properly trained and educated to serve and protect. In today’s technology evolving society it is critical that law enforcement officers develop critical thinking and problem solving skills to stay ahead of criminals that wish to wreak havoc and victimize the innocent and weak. Law enforcement agencies are looking for candidates who possesses the character and communication skills to effectively engage with the citizens and community they serve. Having earned a degree can mean the difference in advancing in your law enforcement career.
Education is an investment in your future. Those who have taken the time and put in the effort to earn a college degree have options that might not otherwise be available.
It is never too late to invest in yourself, it has never been more convenient to study with the many options available by distance education. Law enforcement officers work sporadic schedules and rotating shifts. Distance education is a perfect fit for working adults with busy unpredictable schedules.
Make the year about you, invest in yourself and take the challenge and stop looking for excuses. The future is waiting for those who have the knowledge and skills to lead and motivate others through their actions. Role model the change for your squad and family, but most off all, chase your educational goals for you.
Happy Centennial Celebration to the Criminal Justice Discipline and all the Criminal Justice Scholars!
About the Author
Mark Bond has worked in law enforcement and has been a firearms instructor for more than 33 years. His law enforcement experience includes the military, local, state and federal levels as a police officer and criminal investigator. Mark obtained a BS and MS in criminal justice, and M.Ed in educational leadership with Summa Cum Laude honors. As a lifelong learner, he is currently pursuing a doctoral degree in education (EdD) with a concentration in college teaching and learning. Mark is currently an assistant professor of criminal justice at a university and adjunct professor of administration of justice studies at a community college.