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  • 4 year Degree a Must???

    I'm currently getting my associates degree and looking at schools to transfer to to get a 4 year degree. But my question is... is there any alternatives to getting the 4 year degree? After I have my associates is there anything out there I could do instead of getting a 4 year degree to increase my chances of getting hired? Thanks in advance for any help.

  • #2
    Military. But I would go for the full four years if I were you.
    "It's a long way from the Supreme Court to the streets." -F.Y.
    "Saw drunk, arrested same." -Buck

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    • #3
      **Double Post**
      Last edited by BD0883; 10-02-2009, 02:37 AM.
      "It's a long way from the Supreme Court to the streets." -F.Y.
      "Saw drunk, arrested same." -Buck

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      • #4
        You should get a 4 year degree for yourself, but a two year degree is enough to work anywhere in the states I am familiar with. Just get hired somewhere and get certified in your state, then apply for the good jobs. Experience trumps everything in most departments.

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        • #5
          An associate's is an accomplishment, but more and more applicants are applying with four year degrees. I went ahead and pulled my Master's just to stay ahead of the curve (and for promotional reasons as well).
          I'm 10-8 like a shark in a sea of crime..

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          • #6
            It really depends on the department. Say you're going federal, for DEA, you must either have a 4 year degree, or comparable experience in investigations. For other federal agency's there's no way around it, you have to have a 4 year degree. Most local agencies that require a degree will take 4 years military or law enforcement experience, but some local agencies require the degree.

            If at all possible, just stick to it and finish your 4 year degree.

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            • #7
              The majority of Departments still require a High School Diploma/GED minimum. However, there is a perceptable trend to requiring a number of semester hours,(usually 60), an Associate's Degree, and in some cases a four year degree. You won't go wrong in pursuing a four year degree. Quite a few Officers pursue degrees while actively working at a Department. Many agencies will attempt to accomodate Officers making this effort, others are less progressive. At the end of the day, it's pretty much a matter of an Officer's willingness to make the neccessary sacrifices in order to pursue an education.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by StudChris View Post
                It really depends on the department. Say you're going federal, for DEA, you must either have a 4 year degree, or comparable experience in investigations. For other federal agency's there's no way around it, you have to have a 4 year degree. Most local agencies that require a degree will take 4 years military or law enforcement experience, but some local agencies require the degree.

                If at all possible, just stick to it and finish your 4 year degree.

                Its not impossible going FED with only an Associates, I did. But I am getting ready to return to school and get my 4yr degree.

                If you can get a 2yr just stay and get the 4yr, you'll be better off. just my advice

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                • #9
                  get your bachelor's...02
                  Most people fail because they trade what they want MOST, for what they want at the MOMENT.

                  The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked, WHO can know it?
                  -Jeremiah 17:9

                  Is it any surprise that cops don't trust anyone?

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                  • #10
                    I highly recommend getting the 4 year degree. It gives you the chance to test with every department where you live. You wouldnt have to worry about the educational requirements because you have a bachelors. A few of my buddies are in that boat either they have a 2 year degree or just some college. They are testing where they can but why limit yourself. You need to open as many doors as you can to get into LE and this would be opening a few more for you. Most of them realize now that they should have stayed and got the 4 year degree. Get it before your hired its much easier than when your working 40 hrs possibly on the midnight shift to come home and do homework.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by DARE_SUPPORTER View Post
                      Its not impossible going FED with only an Associates, I did. But I am getting ready to return to school and get my 4yr degree.

                      If you can get a 2yr just stay and get the 4yr, you'll be better off. just my advice
                      When I said "others" I didn't mean all others, DEA 1811 was just an example off the top of my head.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by StudChris View Post
                        When I said "others" I didn't mean all others, DEA 1811 was just an example off the top of my head.
                        10-4

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                        • #13
                          Getting the 4 year degree or not really isn't as important as you might think. You already meet the requirements for most departments. Where you might have a problem is with actually getting a job.

                          A lot of agencies aren't hiring right now due to the economy, but there are still some out there hiring. Something to think about though, many of the agencies hiring now have vacancies during a tough economy. The unemployment rate nationwide is at 9.8%. Most good agencies will already have their rolls filled. When the economy took a dump most people who have jobs stop looking for new ones, because there weren't any. The agencies that have decent working conditions don't normally have many openings and in a tough economy will most likely not see any of the officers leave for another job. During a tough economy even the marginal agencies will see a decrease in officers leaving. What do you think that says about the agencies that have many openings now? Personally I would probably complete my 4 year degree then see where the economy is. If it is good then look for a job, if not, look at the military for a guaranteed job for four years. Just don't screw it up, you might find you like the military and stay on for 20 years.
                          But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new guards for their future security.

                          For the intelectually challenged: If the government screws the people enough, it is the right and responsibility of the people to revolt and form a new government.

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                          • #14
                            Let me be perfectly clear. (most of you aren't old enough to know where that quote came from) Get all the education you can get!

                            However, education does not, cannot, make you a good officer. You have to have a big dose of common sense! Some of the problems in departments now days are created by folks with a lot of education but no common sense. (and there are still those around with no education and complete idiots.) On the plus side; our department is hiring a lot more folks with higher education. One of the benefits to this is, besides the obvious of just having, usually, smarter folks, these guys won't take a lot of crap! They have an education, they have options to go elsewhere and make the same or more money. By elsewhere I mean other lines of work. Use to we didn't lose folks after they got hired, unless they screwed up and got fired. Now they leave all the time for better opportunities. What that has done is, it has changed the way management treats those of us who are left. A little more appreciation is a good thing.

                            A two year asso. degree is about like a high school diploma back when I started. You need to at least take, and pass, your freshman english classes at the very minimum.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mondo View Post
                              I'm currently getting my associates degree and looking at schools to transfer to to get a 4 year degree. But my question is... is there any alternatives to getting the 4 year degree? After I have my associates is there anything out there I could do instead of getting a 4 year degree to increase my chances of getting hired? Thanks in advance for any help.
                              Your purpose in getting a bachelor's degree should not be to boost your marketability in securing a position as a police officer. Go to college to become educated, OR do that while learning a viable skill (insert profession) in something that interests you such as accounting, nursing, civil engineering, etc.

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