Criminal justice can broadly be described as the investigation, prosecution or rehabilitation of individuals accused and convicted of crimes. The industry offers many fantastic benefits to job seekers. This includes a varied and rewarding job role, enviable job stability, excellent retirement and health benefits, plus the chance to help people and give something back to society. If you’re interested in criminal justice, then here are eight great reasons why you should consider a career in the industry:
1. Have a Positive Impact on Others
One of the key reasons why people enter the criminal justice industry is the opportunity to help people and have a positive impact on the lives of others. Jobs within criminal justice vary significantly, but many roles involve working closely with offenders, playing an active role in restorative rehabilitation, and protecting law-abiding citizens from criminal activity. This work is crucial in creating a safer society for all citizens by reducing reoffending rates and helping offenders integrate successfully back into society upon release from prison or other detention facilities.
2. Join a Growing Industry
The criminal justice industry is constantly evolving and job opportunities in the sector continue to grow. According to Chron, job openings in probation are expected to increase by 18 percent by 2026, whereas roles in forensic science are expected to grow by 19 percent. This is far higher than the average across all other industries. It is, therefore, an excellent time to join the criminal justice industry, as demand for qualified professionals is high and is expected to further increase over the coming years.
3. Get Job Satisfaction
It is important to keep in mind that you’re likely to spend most of your adult life working. Hence, why you must enjoy your job role. Many studies have found that helping others is a highly effective way to get satisfaction from your career. We’ve already discussed how criminal justice jobs offer the opportunity to help others and have a positive impact on society. What’s more, people in criminal justice typically have a passion for the industry and want to use their specialist skills to help offenders and improve communities. A criminal justice role gives them the chance to develop their passion and explore their interests.
4. Obtain Accessible Qualifications
Advancements in technology have led to the development of online courses that make qualifications far more accessible to everyone. This means that you can now study for a criminal justice degree from the convenience of your own home, and fit study around your schedule. For instance, you can study a criminology degree online in canada; all you need is a laptop and reliable internet connection. This is particularly beneficial for individuals with commitments stopping them from attending full-time traditional courses.
5. Enjoy Job Stability
Job stability can be difficult to come by in the modern job market. Qualified criminal justice professionals are in high demand, so people in the industry can expect to enjoy enviable job security and stability. Communities recognize the importance of having well-trained criminal justice professionals to ensure that those who commit crimes are convicted, detained and rehabilitated effectively. Hence, there will always be a need for qualified criminal justice professionals, meaning they can have peace of mind knowing their job is safe, so long as they continue to do a quality job and meet the high ethical standards that this job role requires.
6. Secure an Attractive Salary
Many job roles in the criminal justice industry offer attractive salaries, along with other job perks like free healthcare insurance. Criminal justice professionals also have the opportunity to increase their salary and enhance their career prospects by opting to complete additional training courses, many of which are offered for free. It is worth noting that many public service careers offer fantastic retirement schemes and health benefits due to the physically grueling aspect of some jobs. In particular, some careers in the criminal justice sector offer early retirement which allows criminal justice professionals to finish working at a younger age but still retire with the same amount of money.
7. Choose From a Diverse Range of Jobs
Criminal justice offers a hugely diverse range of job opportunities and professionals in the industry can choose to work in a wide variety of settings such as prisons, mental health facilities, juvenile detention centers, and legal firms. The vast variety of criminal justice roles means there is likely to be a job that suits your particular skills and interests. With this in mind, here are some of the top occupations in criminal justice:
- Law enforcement – Police officers and detectives are some of the most recognizable job roles in the criminal justice industry. The role is extremely diverse, but broadly their responsibilities can be defined as investigating crimes and maintaining public order and safety.
- Crime scene investigator – These professionals are responsible for collecting physical evidence at crime scenes, then analyzing this to assist investigations and provide evidence for or against a conviction.
- FBI agent – This is a challenging, rewarding and highly respected career within the criminal justice industry. FBI agents are specially trained to investigate serious crimes like terrorism and cyberattacks to protect citizens and maintain law and order.
- Forensic psychologist – A forensic psychologist is trained to assess a criminal’s state of mind and provide expert testimony in court i.e. as to whether the defendant has the mental capacity to stand trial.
8. Take Advantage of Professional Development
Criminal justice professionals have the opportunity to improve their career prospects by completing additional training courses and qualifications. For example, a criminal justice certificate can help prepare you for a career in this sector; while a masters in criminal justice will expand your skills and knowledge, help prepare you for senior roles, and help set you apart from the competition when applying for the best job openings. What’s more, most professional courses can be completed online during your free time, making it extremely convenient to gain additional certifications and enhance your professional development.