There are numerous job opportunities that you may be able to get in the criminal justice system, and a rehabilitation degree may come in handy in this regard. This is a field with a positive job outlook because of the fact that the need for people with immense academic qualification to handle offenders is on the rise. With a rehabilitation degree, you may work with groups of people like juvenile offenders, people who have been incarcerated as well as people still in prison. Hence, those with a rehabilitation degree may work as probation officers at the counties, cities or even state level. There are some institutions which may offer you the chance to specialize your study*.
To get the rehabilitation bachelor’s degree, you may typically need four years of study. There are some community colleges which offer you the chance to study even as you work. However, the qualification that you get from a community or an online college is an Associate’s degree. Many states have the requirement that you get licensing and certifications before you start to work. These certifications may usually cover areas such as self-defense as well as human relations. They are meant to keep you both safe and adept at handling offenders and ex-convicts who may sometimes be dangerous. Once you have finished with your degree and have attained the necessary certifications, you may need to work under the supervision of a more experienced professional. If it is probation that is your chosen line of duty, you may be needed to work under tutelage for about one year**.
The job description of a person working as a probation officer, for example, is typically to ensure that offenders are meeting the terms of their probation, keeping their records as well as staying in touch with them. Sometimes, even counseling may be necessary in the rehabilitation of an offender. These officers may even play a role in the sentencing or acquittal of a suspect. You may need to be an individual with the ability to interact and communicate well with people from diverse backgrounds and have lots of patience as well.
The coursework that leads to a rehabilitation degree is typically aimed at helping you understand the criminal justice system, especially as concerns the rehabilitation angle. The subjects that you may be taught when pursuing a rehabilitation degree include Introduction to the Criminal Justice System, Sociology, Psychology, Corrections and Rehabilitation, Crisis Strategies, Parole and Probation, Case Management as well as Constitutional Rights. It is important to learn about several more aspects of the criminal justice system other than just rehabilitation*.
For probation officers alone, the job prospects are expected to grow by 18% in coming years. In your work, experience and education may determine how much you make as salary. In 2013, the BLS estimates that the median income for probation officers is $39,549. This is a rewarding field and you may stand the chance to further your education as you work and have it paid for by your employer***.
Like with many careers, you would need to decide fully that this is the kind of job that you would like to handle.
Are you ready to pursue your criminal justice career? Get information on programs in your area and online using our criminal justice degree finder at the top of this page. ↑
*For more information, please visit: http://www.ed.psu.edu/educ/epcse/rhs/correctionstrack
**For more information, please visit: http://career.myonlinecriminaljusticedegree.com/2012/05/probation-officer-training-online.html