Criminal Justice

People depend on law enforcement officers to protect their lives and property and to maintain order. Whether they’re state or federal agents, police or sheriff’s officers, or corrections officers, all law enforcement careers require a gift for understanding others, good critical thinking skills and a desire to serve the community.

John Sloan, program director


A Career in Criminal Justice

The Criminal Justice associate degree program is designed to prepare professionally-educated and competent criminal justice practitioners for careers within the criminal justice system. During your studies, you’ll examine a broad spectrum of criminal justice concepts and theories and complete an internship to learn the connections between criminal justice theory and practice.

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What Can I Do with a Degree in Criminal Justice?

Some entry level positions include: police officer, deputy, dispatcher, corrections officer, trooper, private security officer, juvenile court officer and probation technician. Your duties could involve patrolling a specific area on foot or in a vehicle, directing traffic, issuing traffic summonses, investigating accidents, apprehending and arresting suspects or serving legal processes of courts. You could also be responsible for guarding inmates in penal or rehabilitative institutions and for guarding prisoners in transit between jail, the courtroom and prison.

Some of your Responsibilities May Require you to:

  • Evaluate complaint and emergency-request information to determine response requirements
  • Identify, pursue and arrest suspects and perpetrators of criminal acts
  • Process prisoners and prepare and maintain records of prisoner bookings and prisoner status during booking and pre-trial process
  • Review facts of incidents to determine if criminal acts or statute violations were involved
  • Testify in court to present evidence or act as witness in traffic and criminal cases
  • Arrange daily schedules for prisoners including library visits, work assignments, family visits and counseling appointments
  • Investigate crimes that have occurred within an institution or assist police in their investigations of crimes and inmates

Career Quick Facts

Career Outlook
  • Median Salary Average: $40,190
  • SC Salary Range: $32,280-$50,880
  • 80% placement rate for 2020-2021 graduates

Salary and career information from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Physical Demands
  • mildly active (some walking, standing, moving about)
  • lift to 50 lbs.
Entry Level Positions
  • Police Officer
  • Deputy
  • Corrections Officer
  • Trooper
List of Employers

Recent graduates have found work at:

  • Abbeville Area Medical Center
  • Abbeville County School District
  • Abbeville Police Department
  • Accounting Systems
  • American Security
  • Ametric
  • BF Goodrich
  • Bloomfield Broadcasting
  • Blue Acorn iCi
  • Blue Cross / Blue Shield
  • Brightball
  • Carolina Health Centers
  • City of Newberry
  • Columbia Police Department
  • Computer Dynamics
  • Covidien
  • Cryovac
  • Dell Corporation
  • Department of Corrections
  • Department of Social Services
  • Direct Outbound
  • Dixie Electronics
  • Electrolux Home Products
  • Erskine College
  • Flexible Technologies
  • Fuji Film
  • Galloway Methodist
  • General Electric
  • Greenville County
  • Greenwood County Detention Center
  • Greenwood Genetic Center
  • Greenwood Mills
  • Greenwood Packing Plant
  • Greenwood School District 50
  • Greenwood.Net
  • Harsco
  • Hexcel
  • ID Shop
  • InSite Support
  • JES Restaurant Equipment
  • John de la Howe School
  • Kyros Corporation
  • Lakelands Orthopaedic Clinic
  • Lander University
  • Leath Correctional Institute
  • Lonza
  • Magnolia Manor
  • Merrywood Elementary School
  • Midlands Orthopaedics
  • Mita
  • Monster
  • Morgan Advanced Materials
  • NC State
  • Newberry County Police Department
  • NuVox Communications
  • Palmetto Bank
  • Palmetto GBA
  • Park Seed
  • Park Sterling Bank
  • Piedmont Technical College
  • Prysmian
  • QS/1
  • Saluda School District One
  • Self Regional Healthcare
  • Simple PC
  • Sitel
  • South Carolina Budget & Control Board
  • South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice
  • South Carolina Department of Mental Health
  • South Carolina Law Enforcement Division
  • South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Department
  • Spartanburg County Detention Center
  • SPF North America
  • St. Francis Health Care System
  • T-Mobile
  • TD Bank
  • Technesis
  • The McCravy, Newton, & Sturkie Law Firm, P.A.
  • Trinity Hospital of Augusta
  • Unisys
  • United Health Care
  • Urban Outfitters
  • US Food Service
  • Velux
  • Verizon Wireless
  • Wangner Corporation

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Program Information

The Associate in Applied Science with a major in Criminal Justice program is designed to prepare professionally educated and competent criminal justice practitioners for careers within the criminal justice system.

Our criminal justice program provides highly effective training environments, including: A state-of-the-art lab, featuring driving and firearm simulators; Software that aids in the sketching of suspects; A new mobile crime scene training unit; Crime scene reconstruction software; and Digital cameras and more.

The college has also developed several agreements with four-year colleges and universities that allow graduates to bridge their associate degree into a bachelor’s degree. These programs provide a seamless and affordable pathway to a higher degree in criminal justice.

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