With a four-year, liberal arts degree in justice you’ll be prepared for many career opportunities or for graduate school. You could work for a law firm, law enforcement agency, correctional facility, public policy organization, nonprofit organization or government agency. If you are interested in forensics, you may want to consider a science-related major or a double major in justice and a science-related field.

Entry-level positions include city police officer, juvenile corrections officer, corrections officer, probation agent, border patrol agent, paralegal or legal assistant. With advanced training or a graduate degree, you could pursue a career as a lawyer, judge, mediator, police detective, professor or researcher.

Salaries for justice majors vary, depending on your field and experience. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the following are annual median salaries, as of 2010:

  • City or state police officer: $53,540
  • Correctional officer: $39,020
  • Fish and game warden: $49,730
  • Judge: $119,270
  • Lawyer: $112,760
  • Mediator: $55,800
  • Paralegal or legal assistant: $46,680
  • Police detective: $68,820

Create Your Career Network in College

Because of the versatility of a justice degree, all justice majors are required to complete an internship. During an internship you will gain essential experience, develop insight into careers you do and don’t want to pursue, and begin developing a network of professional colleagues.

Past Internship Sites

211 Wisconsin Call Hotline for Human Services
Brown Deer Police Department
Horizon House for Women in Re-Entry
Immigration and criminal law offices
Internet Predator Prevention website
Justice 2000
Los Angeles Police Department – Narcotics and Vice Unit
Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge
Milwaukee County Clerk’s Office
Milwaukee District Attorney’s Office – Domestic Violence Unit
Milwaukee Police Department – Cold Case Unit
Milwaukee Public Defender’s Office – Investigations
Racine Correctional Facility – Rehabilitation
Racine County Police Department
Safe and Sound Youth Violence Prevention Initiative
Sojourner Family Peace Center
St. Rose Youth and Rehabilitation Center
U.S. Department of Forestry – Law Enforcement Unit
U.S. Marshals Office
Waukesha County Sheriff’s Department
Wauwatosa Police Department
Wisconsin Department of Corrections- Sexual Offenders, Milwaukee Unit
Wisconsin Probation – Mental Health

Mount Mary instilled in me the importance of service learning and public interest work. Both the service learning requirements and the justice program led me to where I am now—a graduate of law school and practicing law at a small nonprofit law firm, providing legal services to the underprivileged throughout southeastern Wisconsin. 

Jennifer Montalvo