About This Program
You’re fascinated by the laws that govern our country. You’re frustrated by even the slightest form of injustice in the world around you. You want a career that helps keep people safe—and serves society at large. Criminal justice may be the major for you.
Why Utica University
Utica University's celebrated major in criminal justice is one that combines a solid foundation in core academics with a practical learning approach emphasizing research, technology, and real-world professional experiences. The program has earned a national reputation for its innovative curriculum, exceptional facilities, and highly accomplished faculty.
Bull Hall, which houses Utica University's Criminal Justice program, is currently looking to the future with a Crime Lab expansion project (as seen in the rendering above), with the help of $717,000 via Community Project Funding through the Fiscal Year 2023 Federal Omnibus Appropriations Bill.
Welcome to Utica University’s Criminal Justice Program!
Utica University’s Bull Hall houses our entire suite of justice-related programs, including the Criminal Justice Program, the Cybersecurity Program, and the Fraud and Financial Crime Program.
For a number of recent years, Utica University's theme has been Never Stand Still, which is an accurate description of a Criminal Justice student’s experience in our program. For example, we are anxiously awaiting a new addition to our building - a Crime Scene Forensics Center, where new courses on Crime Scene Investigation and Forensics will be offered to our students.
Our Criminal Justice students continually engage with our expert faculty, are challenged to think critically and creatively about current criminal justice-related issues and problems, and are tasked with applying that thinking to scenarios, including role-playing opportunities. Utica’s Criminal Justice students may also qualify to apply for membership in our Beta Zeta Chapter of the National Criminal Justice Honor Society, Alpha Phi Sigma.
Students have the opportunity to join the large and active Organization of Justice Studies (OJS), made up of students from all of our Justice Studies-related programs, and can apply to participate in a Ride-along program and a Citizen Police Academy with a local police agency to see, first-hand, the first branch of the criminal justice system in action. OJS also routinely sets up field trips to local criminal justice facilities, such as the New York State Preparedness Training Center, where students may even become role-players in training exercises being conducted by actual emergency response personnel. OJS also takes longer trips, such as to New York City or Washington DC to tour and experience varying branches of the criminal justice system. Past trips have included visits to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Secret Service, and the New York City Police Department’s Headquarters.
From both professional and academic fields, our interdisciplinary faculty know the field of criminal justice well, including the current expectations of employers in the field, which includes federal, state, and local law enforcement, corrections, the legal professions, private industry, as well as researchers and criminologists. Our faculty’s practitioner experience is vital in helping us keep our program up-to-date and as relevant and effective as possible for our students and voluminous alumni.
Students in our program our introduced to the intricacies, capabilities, challenges, and opportunities that the field of criminal justice provides, culminating with an internship experience, where our students work side-by-side in the field with professionals from all branches of the criminal justice system.
We are a Criminal Justice Program for the 21st Century, and we look forward to working with you.
The Criminal Justice Program Faculty
Criminal Justice at Utica
Justice Studies students securing internships each year with organizations in their career fields:
- Law Enforcement
- Law and the Courts
- Corrections, Probation, and Parole
- Juvenile Services
- Private Security
- and more!
What You'll Learn
Criminal Justice is the study of crime, its causes, and its effects on society. It is concerned with preventing and deterring criminal behavior, providing a system where justice and legal rights are served, and rehabilitating the offender. The Utica University’s Criminal Justice Program’s model promotes professional and international learning experiences as well as opportunities for active participation in departmental research, culminating with earning three credits toward your major in a Capstone internship experience at the federal, state, or local level, or in private industry. Possible internship site locations are limited only by a student’s imagination and willingness to travel.
Criminal Justice Faculty
A Degree That Works
Graduates of the program have opportunities in a variety of criminal justice fields including policing, law, probation, juvenile services, private security, public administration/planning, counseling, research, and regulatory enforcement. Graduates may also pursue advanced study in fields such as public administration, criminal justice and criminology, management, and law.
Utica University Criminal Justice alumni have taken leadership positions in Criminal Justice-related fields across the county, and at all levels of government, including agencies such as:
- U.S. Secret Service
- New York State Police
- Oneida County Sheriff's Office
- Utica Police Department
- Rome Police Department
- U.S Treasury
- Veteran’s Affairs Administration
- N.Y. State Attorney General’s Office, and many others!
Student Voices: Danielle Alpi
A brief conversation with Danielle Alpi, a graduate of the criminal justice major now enrolled in Utica University's M.S. in Cybersecurity - Intelligence, Forensics, and Cyber Operations.
Students enjoy a rich selection of internship opportunities as well as access to state-of-the-art forensic research technologies in Bull Hall on the Utica campus.
Documenting a Crime Scene
Students in Professor Shanna Van Slyke's CRJ 222 Criminal Justice Communications class examine clues and document a "crime" scene, set up in Bull Hall.
Video shot by Gabriella Hudziak and edited by Isabella Hudziak for The Tangerine.
Criminal Justice Professor Robert Swenszkowski teamed with Dr. Jessica Thomas, Professor of Biology, to develop a Crime Scene Forensics course in Bull Hall, providing another opportunity for students to enjoy experiential learning.