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What is the point of a CJ degree?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by MTAM View Post
    Agree. A CJ degree is about worthless except that with the VSP if you don't have a degree you don't get any points for promotion. It doesn't have to be a CJ degree. Any worthless degree will do. So maybe it's not completely worthless but probably not worth the time and effort to get for a small 10% raise.
    It's not worthless. Do you even have a degree?

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    • #17
      Yeah, business classes are boring. I went back for a second degree in accounting once and 2/3 through that I figured the heck with it. Hated it.

      OP, regardless of what courses you enroll in, your next 30 hours should be applicable towards a bachelor's degree. Even if you choose CJ you're better off with a BA or BS than an associate's and extra classes.

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      • #18
        "It's not worthless. Do you even have a degree?"

        Yup and it's worthless other than what I have already stated. There are degrees of worthlessnees. Is it completly worthless? Well, probably not. Read between the lines. Was it worth the investment in time, money, stress etc. Nope, not too me. I'll be paying the schooling off for awhile and even if I get promoted with help of a degree the $$ is insignificant towards what I invested. Does it make me a better street cop. Nope. Still trying to figure out what is has done for me? If anyone asked me I would not recommend a degree to be a cop unless you want to be brass at some point. I don't, I like to sleep good at night. Of course at the VSP a degree in basket weaving is as good as any.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by CenTex View Post
          Title says it all.

          And, am I wasting my time if I choose to get a Certificate of Completion in CJ Studies (30 cr. hrs.) on top of an AS of Business? I hear differently, but it just seems like I should have coursework in the career I'm getting into...
          It depends on where you are applying for a job and what requirements you need to meet. Here in NY most agencies require 60 college credits period. Your civil service score is the ticket for an interview and your transcripts must show you have met the college requirements. You can have a degree/credits in basket weaving and get hired as long as you meet the college credit requirement. I have a Bachelors degree in business. I didnt plan on working in the LE feild when I was in college. I had the mentality that "money makes the world go round." That route didnt pan out and I lucked out and got in LE. I at least have a back up plan if my LE career ends.

          One word of advice...since you are already in school stay in school. I have friends who got the the requied credits for LE jobs, got hired and quit school. A couple are just credits shy of a degree and claim they will go back to finish school. They wont. Get it done and it is over with. Once you are out its hard to go back.
          And the road becomes my bride.

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          • #20
            I like what 10-97 said. If your in school might as well stay and finish, although I would change majors. He has a business degree so if the LEO field didn't work out he has a fall back plan. If you get a CJ degree and it doesn't work then what? All good LEO's always have a backup plan

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            • #21
              Originally posted by MTAM View Post
              I like what 10-97 said. If your in school might as well stay and finish, although I would change majors. He has a business degree so if the LEO field didn't work out he has a fall back plan. If you get a CJ degree and it doesn't work then what? All good LEO's always have a backup plan
              Thank You for the support. It took a bit of work to get in my position but Im glad I did it. Anyone who asks my advice is gonna get what I posted above. As discussed earlier in this thread....the word "worthless". Nothing is more worthless than having 90 college credits and no degree to show for it. If you are going to put time in effort into ANYTHING..make sure it is worth your while no matter what it is.
              And the road becomes my bride.

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              • #22
                It's interesting that in so many other states you can get any degree you want and then apply for LE positions. I have a degree in Business Administration with well over 60 credits of college, and still I [U]have[U] to get a degree in Law Enforcement just to be able to goto our college skills program (we don't have a state academy) and even then after everything you still have to get P.O.S.T certified. As far as having a Business Degree, I completely agree with you about how crappy business was; I had only found that out once I graduated and actually moved into a corporate world. It took me 2 months to figure out I had spent all my money on a stupid degree.

                Originally posted by 10-97UPD View Post
                It depends on where you are applying for a job and what requirements you need to meet. Here in NY most agencies require 60 college credits period. Your civil service score is the ticket for an interview and your transcripts must show you have met the college requirements. You can have a degree/credits in basket weaving and get hired as long as you meet the college credit requirement. I have a Bachelors degree in business. I didnt plan on working in the LE feild when I was in college. I had the mentality that "money makes the world go round." That route didnt pan out and I lucked out and got in LE. I at least have a back up plan if my LE career ends.

                One word of advice...since you are already in school stay in school. I have friends who got the the requied credits for LE jobs, got hired and quit school. A couple are just credits shy of a degree and claim they will go back to finish school. They wont. Get it done and it is over with. Once you are out its hard to go back.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by FeelinMN View Post
                  It's interesting that in so many other states you can get any degree you want and then apply for LE positions. I have a degree in Business Administration with well over 60 credits of college, and still I [U]have[U] to get a degree in Law Enforcement just to be able to goto our college skills program (we don't have a state academy) and even then after everything you still have to get P.O.S.T certified. As far as having a Business Degree, I completely agree with you about how crappy business was; I had only found that out once I graduated and actually moved into a corporate world. It took me 2 months to figure out I had spent all my money on a stupid degree.
                  I guess its one of those things where you have to get an eye on what you want to do pretty early in life so you dont find out the hard way later. I know what you are saying...I look at other states and see that soome Police Depts accept over the counter applications. Thats unheard of in these parts. Just keep working hard and it will pay off. Good Luck
                  And the road becomes my bride.

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                  • #24
                    Get a degree in what interests you and get a BA / BS if possible.
                    BTW a CJ degree is not "worthless" (I use it all the time in LE) and it is usefull outside LE.
                    You would learn that if you went to a school with an excellent CJ program. There is a lot more to CJ than just LE!

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                    • #25
                      I have a Criminology degree and I am a police officer. If you can stand it, get a degree in something other than this field. The fact that you have a degree will help you get hired, and it will help you find a new job if you are injured/fired and out of police work.
                      I have only been a police officer for a year and I am already thinking about swapping careers. I love every minute of it and my car rarely sits still more than 10 minutes, but I don't know if I want to do this for 20+ years. I would really like to make more money and sometimes the 8-4 jobs look pretty appealing.
                      With that said, there are different jobs that will take a CJUS degree. Corporate Security and consultant jobs, and I think some alarm system techs make pretty good money. Just my opinion.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by MPDCjock View Post
                        Getting a degree in anything is better than not having a degree.
                        Not always.

                        Originally posted by CenTex View Post
                        What is the point of a CJ degree?
                        To make money for the college. Colleges do a good job selling these programs to youngsters who've watched COPS all their lives. They're told that they'll be more competitive with a CJ degree and that's only partly true. But, of course they believe them and sign up for the full load of classes and the college says cha-CHING!!! I have yet to see any department advertise a requirement of employment is to have a CJ degree.

                        However, some people feel the programs they attended are good. Some people feel they wasted 4 years of their life chasing that particular piece of paper. I've also not seen anyone objectively evaluate different CJ programs. Probably because it's not possible.

                        TNrecruit is a prime example of why I tell people NOT to get CJ degrees. Good luck to you in your new career, brother.
                        NRA Life Member

                        The police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence. - Sir Robert Peel

                        Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin to slit throats. - H. L. Mencken

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                        • #27
                          Get a more generalized degree than CJ. A degree proves you can drag/work your way through something for 2 or 4 years and finish it.

                          It also proves you advance others by throwing your money into that other bottomless pit we call education. (The other is health care). You will have proudly contributed to the numerous careers that support a college. Be proud!!

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                          • #28
                            The point to having a CJ degree or working towards one is so you can tell the cops that stopped you that you know the law and how to do the job. Really though, in my state, any degree will meet the hiring requirements for most departments. I took some CJ classes and did not really see a DIRECT connection to street work. Most of what you will learn for this job happens in FTO and on the street through experience. If you like the CJ classes you are taking, keep taking them. It's your money and your time, take what interests you. If CJ is boring you, take something else. If you think there is a chance you won't make it on the job, take a backup.

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                            • #29
                              Perhaps we should make a sticky somewhere for this question. It seems to come up more often than anything else.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by CenTex View Post
                                What is the point of a CJ degree?
                                To give the football players a gimmie degree so they don't have to work hard at school work.

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