Selecting the Right Criminal Justice School near Nikiski Alaska
So you have decided to pursue a criminal justice degree near Nikiski Alaska. But after you have chosen the kind of degree you want to pursue, just how do you go about selecting a college that will offer the right training to help you achieve your career goals? Naturally the college you select must offer the criminal justice major and degree that you are interested in. And you will probably start by looking for schools that are close to your home and comparing the cost for each college. But there are other issues that you must evaluate prior to making your final selection. For example, the reputation and accreditation of the college are critical factors as well. And if you are interested in attending classes sitting at your computer instead of sitting in a classroom, then finding a quality online degree program will also be a part of your search process. We will discuss these and other qualifications that you might want to utilize in your vetting process when deciding on the best criminal justice college for you. But first, let’s talk a little bit about the criminal justice degrees and majors offered along with the benefits of attending school online.
Criminal Justice Degrees near Nikiski AK
Similar to most other professions, degrees in criminal justice are becoming more commonly needed for various careers in the field. And as the level of education and degree earned advances, so increases the employment opportunities to choose from in Nikiski AK. There are 4 degree levels offered, starting with the Associate Degree in criminal justice. Typically a 2 year degree, it provides an introduction to such specialties as corrections, law enforcement and the judicial court system. An increasing number of police departments are looking for applicants with at least an Associate Degree. The four year Bachelor’s Degree usually covers the same topics as the Associate Degree, just more extensively. The more expansive education creates more options for such positions as FBI agents, probation officers or intelligence analysits. Progressing to a Master’s Degree can involve an additional 2 years of classes in addition to attaining the Bachelor’s Degree. The Master’s Degree enables students to become experts in a specific area of criminal justice. In addition to the opportunities offered with the lower degrees, graduates may also become instructors, court officers or social caseworkers. And finally, for students interested in research or teaching at the college level, the Doctoral Degree or PhD is available as well. Generally taking anywhere from 4 to 7 years to finish, it is a far more rigorous version of the Master’s program. Of course the time requirements for earning any of the 4 degrees will depend on the credit load carried by the student.
Criminal Justice Majors
There are many specialties to pick from when considering which major to pursue for your criminal justice degree. Perhaps CSI has always interested you after viewing numerous episodes of the various crime scene investigation shows. Or perhaps you have always dreamed of being a law enforcement officer, or even an FBI agent. No matter what your career goal, you need to choose a major and a degree in criminal justice that will ready and qualify you for that position. Selecting a program and a school that specializes in that specialty would naturally be the best decision toward that end. Perhaps you have not yet made up your mind on a specialty or a career focus yet. In that case, it would be a good idea to investigate all of the degree alternatives available from the various universities and colleges. Following is a partial list of majors for criminal justice degrees offered in the Nikiski AK area:
- Law enforcement
- Homeland security
- Forensic science
- Social Work
- Crime scene investigation
- Pre-law Studies
- Police science
Before enrolling in the program you have decided on, research the degree program you are interested in as well as the college. Just because a criminal justice college is accredited and has a good reputation in general does not guarantee that all of its specialty programs are equally highly respected. That’s why it is essential to choose a major first prior to selecting a college to enroll in.
Attending Criminal Justice Schools Online
A number of students might not have access to a criminal justice degree program in their vicinity, or they may just want the independence 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 domiciled within the USA that provide degree programs online much like the ones offered on-campus. And for many Nikiski AK students, especially those who continue working part or full-time while attending college, the convenience and accessibility of online colleges in many cases make them the only option. And as an additional advantage, online colleges are often lower in cost than on campus options. Tuition can be lower and costs for such things as study materials and commuting may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just make sure, as with any school you are considering, that the program you enroll in is accredited by an approved organization, for example the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (more on accreditation later). But if you are motivated, and can study in this kind of independent environment, then obtaining your degree online might be the ideal option for you.
Concerns to Ask Criminal Justice Schools
At this point you have no doubt come to a decision on a criminal justice degree program and a major, as well as if you want to obtain your degree online or by going to classes on-campus. Having made those decisions, it’s time to begin looking for Nikiski AK area schools and fine tuning your options. Since there are numerous colleges to choose from, literally hundreds within the United States alone, it’s essential to have a list of qualifying questions to ask when assessing colleges. Obviously cost is a significant factor and you will need to pick a school that is within your scholastic budget. And we have already mentioned several others as well, such as location, accreditation and reputation. To help you address those concerns and more, following is a list of questions you may wish to ask the colleges you are reviewing before making your ultimate selection.
Is the Criminal Justice School Accredited? Numerous criminal justice colleges have obtained one or more accreditations from regional or national organizations. One of the most respected is the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Colleges and programs that have been accredited by the ACJS have gone through a rigorous assessment of their course of instruction and teachers. It’s imperative to verify that the degree program and school you enroll in are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization for a number of reasons. Along with helping guarantee that you obtain a top notch education, it will also help in securing student loans or financial aid, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Nikiski AK employers prefer graduates of colleges that are accredited with excellent reputations.
What is the Reputation of the College? As stated previously, along with accreditation the reputation of the school you attend is significant also. It’s especially crucial if you are entering the profession with no relevant prior employment history. Without any previous experience, Nikiski AK employers will be evaluating the quality of your education as a primary factor when going over your resume. There are a number of college rating organizations where you can find college reviews and rankings, including U.S. News and World Report. They consider the quality of the core curriculum, the reputation of the instructors and other aspects contributing to the educational programs. Bear in mind that a college with an overall less than outstanding reputation might still be well respected for a specific degree program that you might have an interest in.
Is Job Assistance Provided? Find out what the graduation rates are for the Nikiski AK colleges you are reviewing. A lower percentage might be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out, or that the instructors were not up to the task of teaching the course of study. It’s also important 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 beginning of your career in criminal justice. A high placement rate will not only help verify that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but that it also has a large network of contacts to help students secure jobs after graduation.
Where are the Colleges Located? As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, among the initial things you will probably look at when searching for criminal justice colleges is the location of the schools. Unless you have determined that you will move or possibly live on campus, the college you choose will need to be within driving distance of your Nikiski AK home. Naturally attending classes online will remove the need for travel and make location a non-issue. Something to keep in mind is that if you choose to attend a college not in your state of residence, you may be required to pay a higher tuition than resident students, particularly for state colleges and universities. Community and junior colleges also tend to charge students higher fees if they reside outside of the school district or state.
How Big are the Classrooms? Unless you like to disappear in the crowd, attending smaller classes offers the option for more interaction with the teachers. Bigger classes allow for little chance of receiving individualized instruction if needed. One method to assess the interaction between students and faulty is to audit a few classes prior to making your final decision. Talk to some of the students and ask what they have experienced. Also, talk to the instructors and inquire what their teaching styles are. You might also want to inquire as to what their backgrounds have been in the Alaska criminal justice field.
Are Classes Offered to Fit Your Schedule? Finally, it’s crucial to confirm that the ultimate program you select provides classes at times that are compatible with your busy lifestyle. This is particularly true if you opt to continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Nikiski AK, make sure they are available at those times. Additionally, if you can only attend part-time, make sure it is an option as well. And ask what the make-up policy is should you have to miss any classes due to emergencies or illness.
Enrolling in a Criminal Justice School near Nikiski AK?
If you are considering attending a criminal justice college near Nikiski AK, following is some interesting and useful background information about the Nikiski area where your school campus will be located.
Nikiski is located at 60°42′28″N 151°15′46″W / 60.70778°N 151.26278°W / 60.70778; -151.26278 (60.707891, -151.262646) on the west side of the Kenai Peninsula. It lies along the shore of Cook Inlet between Salamatof to the south and the Swanson River to the northeast. It is bordered across the Swanson River by the Point Possession CDP.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the Nikiski CDP has a total area of 75.9 square miles (196.7 km2), of which 69.4 square miles (179.8 km2) are land and 6.5 square miles (16.8 km2), or 8.57%, are water. The CDP is in a low-lying region covered by several lakes, including Stormy Lake, Suneva Lake, Daniels Lake, Timberlost Lake, Island Lake, Foreland Lake, Bernice Lake, and Cabin Lake.
Nikiski first appeared on the 1880 U.S. Census as the unincorporated Tinneh villages of "Kultuk" (AKA Nikishka No. 3) and "Titukilsk and Nikishka". Kultuk had a population of 17, and Titukilsk and Nikishka had a population of 57, all of whom were Tinneh Natives. There apparently were no census reports from 1880 until 1980, when the area was organized as "Nikishka" and made a census-designated place (CDP). The name was altered to "Nikiski" in 1990 and has reported as such on each successive census.
Select the Ideal Criminal Justice College near Nikiski AK
Making sure that you enroll in the ideal criminal justice college near Nikiski AK is crucial to your obtaining the proper training to be successful in this exciting and growing profession. Employers value which school you earned your criminal justice degree from, so it’s in your best interest to care also. Attaining the greatest potential success in your criminal justice career begins with choosing the ideal criminal justice college predicated upon your career goals. As we have addressed in this article, it’s imperative that the school and degree program you pick both have excellent reputations and are accredited. Additionally, confirm that the college has a job placement program with a strong track record for placing its graduates. You originally came to this site due to an interest in Best Online Masters In Criminal Justice. However, by using our checklist of questions, you will be able to assess and compare the criminal justice schools you are reviewing so that you can narrow down your options and make the best choice. And when you have made the correct decision, you will receive the appropriate training so that you can begin your successful career in criminal justice.
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