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Crime Science: A Career With a Bright Outlook

by Monica Smith

Jul 22, 2019, 9:00 AM.

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Fully online STEM degree program teaches modern methods of crime analysis.

Information technology, DNA testing, body-worn cameras—recent technological developments in law enforcement have had far-reaching effects on police agencies and their ability to fight crime. Today’s careers in crime analysis and forensics require sophisticated analytical skills, such as those taught within Florida International University’s fully online bachelor of science degree in crime science. The carefully designed program, and first of its kind in the U.S., has piqued the attention of many in the law enforcement industry within the U.S. and abroad. According to The Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Florida International University, many career opportunities exist for its graduates.

In Demand

“Crime analysts with a crime science background are sought-after because of the proliferation of modern technology and the growth of computer-related crime. Contemporary concerns over homeland security and counterterrorism have also fueled the need for the degree,” said Lisa Stolzenberg, chair of criminology and criminal justice.

Because of these law enforcement agency challenges, graduates are in demand and the job outlook for crime analysts is quite favorable. According to the International Association of Crime Analysts (IACA), the demand for qualified crime analysts has increased more than tenfold in the past 15 years. It will continue to increase even more over time as law enforcement further comes to realize the potential of sophisticated data gathering and analysis. 

Job Outlook and Internships

Crime analysts in all fields earned an average of $77,000 and there will be about 28,300 job openings anticipated through 2024. In addition to tremendous employment opportunities, the fully online bachelor’s degree in crime science also prepares graduates for FIU’s M.S. in criminal justice and Ph.D. in international crime and justice.

To help its learners, FIU’s Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice coordinates internship opportunities within 90 criminal justice agencies in South Florida. Students can also intern with criminal justice agencies anywhere in the U.S. and abroad, or with faculty members on research projects within and outside of FIU.

Overwhelming Need

“Because of the overwhelming need for crime analysis, especially GIS mapping, our department is increasingly being contacted by local enforcement for internships, research projects, and jobs,” stated Carleen Vincent, associate chair of criminology and criminal justice. 

Those with a bachelor’s degree can apply for positions within municipalities or for jobs within government offices or even private agencies.

“The BS in crime science degree combines forensics and computer science with traditional criminology and criminal justice. It’s a growing field,” said Stewart D’Alessio, professor of criminology and criminal justice. “The BSCS is aimed at students with an interest in crime control and who wish to pursue employment as criminal intelligence and crime analysts, police officers and detectives, criminal investigators and special agents, and private investigators.” 

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