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  • new to the forum,a few ?'s

    hello everyone. im 20 years old and currently going to school for my associates degree in criminal justice. i dont know how many of you have gone to school for some sort of a LE degree but i thought since you already have experience in the field some of u might be able to tell me in what ways will an assoc. degree in CJ help me when i get into the LE field? i didnt really want to go to college after highschool but my parents really wanted me to so i decided i would get a degree in a field that ive always wanted to do which is be an officer. is the pay increase a lot? am i more likely to get hired? i know these things probably varry in different parts of the country but i just wanted to get some sort of idea on how much this degree is auctally going to help me out. another question i have is what are the differences(besides the obvious ones) between working for the city and the county? ive leaned more towards a sheriff's dept because i would like working in a more rural area instead of a city. the last question i have is about ride alongs. i've seen quite a few posts about these and i know it would be helpful for me to get some hands on experince but how do i go about getting into a ridealong program? thanks in advance for any advice

  • #2
    For starters, take an English Compostion class. There you will learn the joys of capital letters and paragraphs.

    Seriously, everything we do in Law Enforcement involves the ability to write. It is the one thing that is completely over looked when you watch any of the cool cop shows on TV. You never see the days that the Detectives spend 14 hours at their desks for the 3 day in a row catching up on the paperwork necessary for the 80 or so open cases they have.

    As for the CJ degree, see my post in this thread:


    Policies on Ride-alongs will vary from department to department. Contact one that interests you and ask them.

    The primary differences between the Sheriff's Office and the PD are the obvious ones. The rest is just politics and semantics.

    That being said, if you run into any of the Constitutionalists or their ilk, the Sheriff's Department is about the only form of Law Enforcement they will recognize.


    • #3
      As far as a degree goes, most departments take a degree regardless what it is in, but a CJ degree may give you more insight into exactly what the job will entail.

      Remember in the future that you are posting on a site for police officers to respond to your questions, not IMing you friends. Use proper English, spell out all the words, use proper capitilization and punctuation. This will be a requirement for testing and on future reports should you enter the LE field.

      Ridealongs are the sole discression of the agency, so check with your local LE agencies to see if they have a policy or permit ridealongs.

      There are huge differences between small town, large city, county, and statewide policing. Start interviewing officers in different agencies to get their take on it before you decide.

      Good luck.
      John Ricks


      • #4
        Never Get Cj Degree

        No department requires a CJ Degree just a degree. major in another field simply because if you would not get a job as a police officer you are out in the cold.
        Are you otherwise qualified to apply to tets and start the background process?

        Are you healthy ... Height vs Weight .... Stamina ..... Endurance ... Strength.
        Have you are drug or alcohol issues ?
        Have you ever commited any crimes that you werwe or were not caught & prosecuted for ?

        There is a lot more to making the cut then just the degree.
        Been part of the hiring process for so long I can't remember so I know what you need to make the cut in most locations

        You get no more pay for the degree you just get passed over for the job without it. Sounds like your heart isn't into college anyway so how well you apply yourself is yet to be judged. You don't go to college just because somebody else wants you to. That is a sure sign of failure waiting to happen.
        Last edited by Bodie; 08-05-2005, 07:40 AM.


        • #5
          "Thou shalt not butcher thy native tongue." - From my High School English teacher

          Good report writing will make your life a little easier once you get into an agency. Supervisors will appreciate your ability to articulate events as well. They won't have to spend as much time reviewing your reports. Other officers will appreciate that when you do a report, their actions will be clearly stated when you write it. Criminals will learn to dislike you because accurate report writing hurts them.

          Compostion will be an entry level class for you, and I would suggest taking a course such as Technical Report Writing. Of course, that depends on what college or university you attend and what they offer. A good Criminal Justice professor will be demanding when it comes to your projects and reports.

          Be a sponge in college, learn as much as you can. Try to have fun too


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