When most people think of Nebraska, they think of a safe, Midwestern state with low crime rates. It's true that Nebraska is largely a safe state; the U.S. Census Bureau reports that Nebraska has the 15th lowest rate of violent crime in the country. However, crime rates don't stay low on their own—Nebraska relies on its police force to keep the state safe.
Nebraska takes safety seriously, which is why they have the Nebraska Commission on Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice. Their research found a slight increase in property crimes from 2011 to 2012, including a 7 percent increase in arson and a 2 percent increase in burglary and motor vehicle theft.
Criminal Justice Education in Nebraska
You could enter into the growing field of criminal justice with the program listings at CriminalJusticePrograms.com. Find out more about this degree and then contact our featured schools.go to school listings
If you want to earn a criminal justice degree, you have to decide if you want an Associate's degree or Bachelor's degree. An Associate's degree gives you a basic understanding and overview of the various parts of the criminal justice field, while a Bachelor's degree gives you a more thorough understanding of the field. Regardless of which degree level you choose to pursue, the topics you study are largely the same. You can look forward to studying:
- Ethics in Criminal Justice
- Criminology and Victimology
- Criminal Law
- Criminal Procedure
Since there are so many areas of criminal justice, you may want to specialize in one area. Some schools require you to select a specialty area, while other schools make it optional. Study something that suits your future career goals and matches your interests. Popular choices include:
- Forensic Techniques
- Identity Theft
- Violent Crime
- Internet Crime
Another way to get the most from your education is completing an internship. A criminal justice internship is usually one semester long. Your school matches you to an internship site that suits your coursework and career goals to give you valuable experience. In some cases, an internship can even turn into a job offer.
The Nebraska State Grants, the EducationQuest's "Reaching Your Potential" Scholarship and the Lincoln Community Foundation are financial assistance programs intended specifically for students in Nebraska. Many of Nebraska's universities and colleges offer school-specific scholarships, which may help fund your criminal justice education.
If you are concerned about paying for school, you may want to visit this page to learn more about criminal justice scholarships.
Outlook for Criminal Justice in Nebraska
Since most criminal justice programs are designed to prepare you for a career, you should have a good sense of what type of job you want after graduation. You can join the 15,000 protective service employees in Nebraska by looking for a career in the community, in the courtroom, or in the prison system.
Most criminal justice jobs in Nebraska require you to work in a variety of settings. Patrol officers, security guards, and detectives all have to work in the office, on the street, and at crime scenes. These careers may test your knowledge of criminal procedure and law. Courtroom and prison jobs are a bit sparser in Nebraska, but with the proper experience and education, you may be able to land a job in these coveted spots.
We've put together the salary for some top criminal justice career paths below. Data found at the Bureau of Labor Statistics from 2014.
Are you ready to find out what a criminal justice degree can do for you and your community? Contact one of our featured schools to take the next step in your education.