Careers in Criminal Justice
Learn from local criminal justice experts on what it takes to be successful in the industry.
Academia and Research
Getting a job in a Criminal Justice Agency
Do not get arrested for any offense. Most criminal justice agencies conduct extensive background checks on new employees. Convictions for traffic violations, misdemeanors, as well as felonies may prevent you from entering the profession you are studying to master. Should you find yourself in such circumstances, your adviser may have suggestions about useful next steps. Such advice does not constitute legal counsel, nor can the adviser always keep such information confidential when preparing recommendations for graduate school or employment.
Check the Criminal Justice Program bulletin boards. Job and volunteer positions are posted on a bulletin board outside of the Criminal Justice Office, Clow Faculty Building room 401. Work and volunteer experience can help you to focus your career goals and make you a desirable candidate for employment. As an example, many CJ majors interested in law enforcement serve as Community Service Officers in Oshkosh or surrounding communities. Don’t discredit a part-time job, as it may ultimately be helpful in your career.
Criminal Justice professional and graduate school admission committees look for applicants with leadership experience in a variety of organizations. There are two organizations directly related to criminal justice on our campus, Alpha Phi Sigma (the Criminal Justice Honor Society) and the Criminal Justice Student Association. These organizations can help you build your professional network among your peers and your professors. Both organizations sponsor speakers, organize trips to criminal justice facilities and sponsor the annual CJ Job Fair. You may also want consider joining the UW Oshkosh Pre-Law Society.
In Wisconsin you must be certified through the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Training and Standards to work in local law enforcement. At the present time, this means successfully completing a 10 week course offered through the Wisconsin Technical College System. You can find information about these courses on the bulletin boards and from the department program assistant.