If you’re a born leader, courageous, welcome a challenge and enjoy serving others, then a criminal justice degree may be the ideal college degree program for you. A criminal justice degree from Colorado Christian University affords you the opportunity to pursue numerous job opportunities including police officer, judge, corrections officer, FBI agent, crime scene investigator, lawyer, bailiff, fire inspector, police detective, and criminologist just to name a few. Not all criminal justice-related-jobs require a bachelor’s degree, so CCU offers an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice and a Criminal Justice Certificate Program, which will help you acquire the credit hours you need to eventually pursue a higher degree.
One popular, but dangerous, position that a criminal justice degree prepares you for is that of security guard. Security guards, often called security officers, inspect and patrol public and private property against vandalism, theft, fire and other illegal activities. Security guard jobs are physically demanding, often involve late night hours and sometimes are a second job for many. Some security guards are armed and protect large buildings and land area while other security guards are not armed and protect smaller buildings. Security guards must be able to communicate with and call for assistance from police, fire and emergency medical services. Security guards often render aid to injured persons until EMT’s arrive, and they will also subdue suspects until police backup arrives on the scene. While security guards do not make the actual arrest of the perpetrator, they do contribute to the capturing of the offender by writing comprehensive reports outlining what the suspect did and what the security guard witnessed. Security officers will often interview eyewitnesses and victims, prepare case reports and testify in court.
There are basically two types of security guards: static and mobile. Static security officers are assigned to one specific area and stay at that one location for the length of their shift. Static security guards will become very familiar with their specified area of protection and the people who work there. One of the most common responsibilities of a security guard is to monitor numerous closed-circuit televisions that record all activity on the property and surrounding area; they will spend a good deal of their shift watching what surveillance equipment records and listening for alarms. Mobile security guards are constantly on the go conducting security checks within their assigned area.
Beefed Up Public Security
Since the terrorist attacks on 9-11-01, security jobs have increased greatly in public arenas such as airports, bus terminals, train stations, sports stadiums, shopping malls, banks, government buildings, and hospitals. At air, sea, and rail terminals, security guards are charged with protecting by screening people, property and equipment. Using a variety of detection devices such as metal detectors, x-ray machines, and canines specially trained to detect explosives and other illegal substances, security guards have to be ever-vigilant of any suspicious behavior. Security guards at large venues like universities and stadiums must perform crowd control, supervise parking, direct traffic and look for underage drinking and use of illegal drugs. Armored car guards protect money and employees in transit and during pickup and drop-offs. Armored car security guards are always armed and often wear bulletproof vests.
Security Guard Job Training and Education
Many states require that security guards be licensed. In most states, licensing requires that you be at least 18 years old, pass a background check, and complete coursework in subjects such as emergency procedures, subduing and detaining suspects, and property rights. Armed guards must be trained in the proper use of a weapon and drug testing is required and random. Armed security guard positions always have more stringent requirements than positions that do not require the possession of a weapon.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, job opportunities for security guards should be plentiful in coming years because of growing demand for these workers and the need to replace experienced workers who leave the occupation. In addition to full-time job opportunities, the limited training requirements and flexible hours attract many people seeking part-time or second jobs.
To read information about job earnings for various criminal justice-related job opportunities, please read the CCU blog entitled, “Criminal Justice Careers and Salaries.” (link to this blog here).
CCU holds fast to traditional family values while preparing students for positions of leadership in their career, church, family, community and the world. While at CCU, you will be afforded many opportunities to serve our Lord and develop a lifetime of service to God’s Kingdom. We want you to become seekers of truth and knowledge and carry that desire for lifelong learning with you long after you leave our campus. Come share CCU’s love of Christ on campus, in the community, and in the world.