Selecting the Right Criminal Justice College near Whittier Alaska
So you have made the decision to earn a criminal justice degree near Whittier Alaska. But once you have chosen the kind of program you want to work toward, just how do you tackle picking a school that will provide the proper training to help you realize your career objectives? Naturally the school you select must offer the criminal justice major and degree that you are interested in. And you will undoubtedly begin by looking for colleges that are near your residence and comparing the cost for each college. But there are additional issues that you must investigate before making your final choice. For instance, the reputation and accreditation of the college are critical factors also. And if you have an interest in attending classes in front of your computer as opposed to sitting in a classroom, then locating a quality online degree program will similarly be a part of your due diligence process. We will deal with these and other qualifications that you may wish to utilize in your vetting process when deciding on the ideal criminal justice college for you. But to begin with, let’s take a look at the criminal justice degrees and majors available as well as the benefits of attending online schools.
Criminal Justice Degrees near Whittier AK
As with most other professions, degrees in criminal justice are becoming more commonly required for a number of careers in the field. And as the level of education and degree obtained increases, so increases the job opportunities available in Whittier AK. There are 4 degree levels available, starting with the Associate Degree in criminal justice. Typically a two year degree, it offers an introduction to such specialties as law enforcement, corrections and the judicial court system. An increasing number of police departments are seeking applicants with at least an Associate Degree. The four year Bachelor’s Degree normally includes the same topics as the Associate Degree, just more extensively. The more expansive education creates more opportunities for such positions as FBI agents, intelligence analysts or probation officers. Advancing to a Master’s Degree can involve an additional two years of classes in addition to obtaining the Bachelor’s Degree. The Master’s Degree allows students to become experts in a specific area of criminal justice. Along with the options offered with the lesser degrees, graduates can also become instructors, court officers or social caseworkers. Finally, for those with an interest in teaching at the college level or research, the Doctoral Degree or PhD is available as well. Generally requiring anywhere from four to seven years to finish, it is a far more rigorous version of the Master’s program. Needless to say the time requirements for obtaining any of the 4 degrees will be dependent on the credit load carried by the student.
Criminal Justice Majors Offered
There are a number of specializations to choose from when deciding which major to elect for your criminal justice degree. Perhaps CSI has always fascinated you after enjoying countless episodes of the various crime scene investigation TV programs. Or quite possibly you have always dreamed of being a police officer, or even an FBI agent. No matter what your career objective, you need to select a degree and a major in criminal justice that will prepare and qualify you for that job. Selecting a program and a school that specializes in that specialty would naturally be the best option toward that end. Possibly you have not yet decided on a specialty or a career focus yet. In that situation, it would be a good idea to investigate all of the degree options available from the various universities and colleges. Following is a partial list of criminal justice degree majors offered in the Whittier AK area:
- Law enforcement
- Homeland security
- Forensic science
- Social Work
- Crime scene investigation
- Pre-law Studies
- Police science
Prior to enrolling in the college you have selected, investigate the degree program you have an interest in along with the college. Even if a criminal justice college is accredited and has a good reputation as a whole does not indicate that all of its specialty programs are equally highly respected. That’s why it is very important to choose a major first prior to choosing a school to enroll in.
Criminal Justice Online Colleges
Some students may not have access to a criminal justice degree college in their region, or they might just prefer the convenience of earning a degree online. Regardless of the reason, they will discover that there are accredited options available online. There a large number of colleges located within the United States that provide online degree programs much like those offered on campus. And for a number of Whittier AK students, particularly those who continue working full or part-time while earning their degree, the accessibility and convenience of online schools may make them the sole option. And as an added benefit, online schools are frequently lower in cost than on-campus alternatives. Tuition may be cheaper and expenses for such things as commuting and study materials may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just make sure, just like for any college you are considering, that the program you choose is accredited by an acknowledged agency, for example the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (more on accreditation later). But if you are motivated, and can learn in this type of independent environment, then obtaining your degree online might be the best alternative for you.
Topics to Ask Criminal Justice Programs
By now you have undoubtedly decided on a criminal justice degree program and a major, including if you want to earn your degree online or by attending classes on campus. With those decisions made, it’s time to begin looking for Whittier AK area colleges and fine tuning your options. Considering that there are a large number of colleges to select from, in fact hundreds within the USA alone, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifying questions to utilize when assessing colleges. Obviously cost is a significant factor and you will need to choose a school that fits within your academic budget. And we have already pointed out several others as well, including accreditation, reputation and location. To help you address those concerns and more, below is a list of questions you might want to ask the colleges you are considering before making your ultimate decision.
Is the Criminal Justice Program Accredited? Numerous criminal justice schools have received one or more accreditations from regional or national agencies. Among the most respected is the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Schools and programs that have been accredited by the ACJS have undergone an extensive assessment of their course of instruction and teachers. It’s important to verify that the program and college you choose are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency for a number of reasons. Along with helping assure that you obtain a top notch education, it will also help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not obtainable for non-accredited colleges. Additionally, a number of Whittier AK employers are looking for graduates of colleges that are accredited with good reputations.
What is the Reputation of the Program? As stated previously, in conjunction with accreditation the reputation of the college you select is significant also. It’s especially crucial if you are entering the field with no relevant previous work history. With no prior experience, Whittier AK employers will be weighing the quality of your education as a key factor when going over your resume. There are several school rating organizations where you can obtain school rankings and reviews, such as U.S. News and World Report. They evaluate the quality of the core curriculum, the reputation of the instructors and other elements contributing to the educational programs. Keep in mind that a college with an overall less than excellent reputation may still be well regarded for a specific degree program that you might be interested in.
Is Job Assistance Provided? Ask what the graduation rates are for the Whittier AK schools you are reviewing. A lower percentage might be a sign that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out, or that the instructors were not up to the task of teaching the curriculum. It’s also imperative that the colleges have job placement programs with higher placement rates. A job assistance program will help you obtain that first crucial job after graduation that marks the starting point of your career in criminal justice. A higher placement rate will not only help validate that the college has an excellent reputation within the industry, but that it additionally has a substantial network of contacts to assist students in obtaining jobs upon graduation.
How Far Away are the Colleges Located? As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, among the first things you will most likely look at when looking for criminal justice colleges is the location of the schools. Unless you have decided that you will relocate or perhaps board on campus, the school you select will have to be within driving distance of your Whittier AK residence. Certainly attending online classes will remove the necessity for travel and make location a non-issue. Something to bear in mind is that if you choose to go to a college outside of your resident state, you may be charged a higher tuition than resident students, particularly for state colleges and universities. Junior and community colleges also often charge students higher fees if they reside outside of the state or school district.
How Big are the Classes? Unless you prefer to disappear in the crowd, attending smaller classes offers the option for more interaction with the instructors. Large classes allow for little chance of receiving one-on-one instruction if needed. One method to assess the interaction between faculty and students is to sit in on a few classes prior to making your ultimate decision. Talk to several of the students and ask what their experiences have been. Also, talk to the instructors and inquire what their teaching approaches are. You might also want to inquire as to what their backgrounds have been in the Alaska criminal justice profession.
Are Class Times Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s critical to confirm that the ultimate school you select offers classes at times that will accommodate your active lifestyle. This is especially important if you decide to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Whittier AK, make certain they are available at those times. Also, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option also. And find out what the make-up procedure is should you need to miss any classes due to illness or emergencies.
Enrolling in a Criminal Justice School near Whittier AK?
If you are considering attending a criminal justice college near Whittier AK, following is some interesting and useful background information about the Whittier area where your school campus will be located.
Whittier is a city at the head of the Passage Canal in the U.S. state of Alaska, about 58 miles southeast of Anchorage. The city is within the Valdez–Cordova Census Area. At the 2010 census the population was 220, up from 182 in 2000. The 2016 estimate was 214 people, almost all of whom live in a single building. Whittier is also a port for the Alaska Marine Highway.
The region occupied by Whittier was once part of the portage route of the Chugach people native to Prince William Sound. Later, the passage was used by Russian and American explorers, and by prospecting miners during the gold rush. The nearby Whittier glacier was named for American poet John Greenleaf Whittier in 1915, and the town eventually took the name as well.
During World War II, the United States Army constructed a military facility, complete with port and railroad near Whittier Glacier and named the facility Camp Sullivan. The spur of the Alaska Railroad to Camp Sullivan was completed in 1943 and the port became the entrance for United States soldiers into Alaska.
Enroll in the Right Criminal Justice Degree Program near Whittier AK
Making certain that you pick the ideal criminal justice program near Whittier AK is vital to your receiving the appropriate training to be successful in this growing and exciting profession. Employers respect which school your criminal justice degree came from, so it’s in your best interest to care also. Achieving the ultimate potential success in your criminal justice career starts with picking the optimal criminal justice college based on your career goals. As we have discussed in this article, it’s important that the college and degree program you choose both have excellent reputations and are accredited. Additionally, make sure that the college has a job assistance program with a strong track record for placing its students. You originally came to this site due to an interest in Accelerated Criminal Justice Degree. However, by using our checklist of questions, you will be able to analyze and compare the criminal justice schools you are looking at in order to narrow down your choices and make the best choice. And when you have made the correct decision, you will get the appropriate education so that you can start your successful career in criminal justice.
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