Criminal justice majors aspire to take a bite out of crime


Dennis Gosnell, Assignment Editor

From the late 1970s to present, McGruff the Crime Dog has told the public to “Take a bite out of crime.” Potential criminal justice majors aim to do exactly that.

There are a variety of jobs to choose from

Those who study criminal justice have a wide variety of jobs to choose from. They can be police officers, correction officers, parole officers, DEA agents, border patrol officers, or they can enter into numerous other criminal justice professions.

Rose State offers students two options for the criminal justice program. First is the criminal justice option and the second is the criminal justice, police science option (COP).

Studying Criminal Justice gives opportunities

The purpose of the criminal justice option is to prepare students who are interested in a career in the criminal justice field for the job ahead. The program is also designed to transfer to a college or university baccalaureate degree program in the criminal justice field.

The COP option is for students that are interested in jumping right into the field. It gives students the information they need to take the Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training (CLEET) certification exam, and in order to pass they must receive at least a score of 70 percent.

Upon completing the program and passing the CLEET exam, students are considered Certified Peace Officers. Once students are certified they can get entry-level jobs within the criminal justice field.

“The COP option is really popular, 10 students [from Rose State] took and passed the exam,” Arnold Waggoner, professor of criminal justice/corrections said.

One way in which students gain knowledge is through exposure to the people who are out working in the field. This gives students unique insight and knowledge into the criminal justice field.

Interning with professionals around the state gives first hand knowledge of the field

Students who choose to major in criminal justice get the opportunity to intern with other criminal justice practitioners throughout Oklahoma.

“Students get the chance to go out and work with professionals in the field which allows them to learn about the job and see if it is something they really want to do,” Waggoner said, “We’ve had one student go and work in a crime lab, and another work in a funeral home.”

There is also the Future Criminal Justice Professionals club that meets at 1 p.m. every first and third Thursday of the month in SS112. The first meeting on March 1 is scheduled as a planning meeting in which the club will elect new officers and set an agenda for the semester.

One of the projects the club is working on is the collection of old cellphones that police officers and emergency personnel refurbish and hand out to senior citizens and domestic violence victims. These cellphones will be given for (911) emergency assistance. For more information call 736-0238.

CCBI Deputy Director Andy Parker explains the identification of shoe-prints on a pillow cover during Jason Young's retrial on February 16, 2012, in Raleigh, North Carolina. Young is accused of murdering his wife Michelle on November 3, 2006, in their Wake County home.. (Pool photo Shawn Rocco/Raleigh News & Observer/MCT)

CCBI Deputy Director Andy Parker explains the identification of shoe-prints on a pillow cover during Jason Young's retrial on February 16, 2012, in Raleigh, North Carolina. Young is accused of murdering his wife Michelle on November 3, 2006, in their Wake County home.. (Pool photo Shawn Rocco/Raleigh News & Observer/MCT)

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