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Criminal Justice

Division of Behavioral & Social Sciences

The Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice provides students with a broad understanding of the complex and often controversial issues inherent in the American criminal justice system by focusing on various perspectives and theories within the discipline.

Program Overview

Through coursework and internship opportunities, the Criminal Justice program helps students discover a clear and evident link between theory, practice and policy while studying crime and criminal behavior across multiple contexts. The program integrates essential knowledge with the development of necessary skills to prepare students to pursue career opportunities within the ever-changing field of criminal justice and/or graduate school admission.

, Mitchell College
, Mitchell College

What You Will Learn

The Criminal Justice program prepares students to:

  • Understand the basic structure and functions of the American Criminal Justice System (Police, Courts and Corrections), including development of criminal law and criminal procedure as well as sentencing and reintegration into society
  • Identify and evaluate the major theories about crime causation and victimization to recognize and assess contemporary injustices within the criminal justice system
  • Demonstrate intrapersonal/interpersonal skills through experiential learning necessary for careers within the ever-changing criminal justice field

The Mitchell Difference

Earning a degree at Mitchell College requires a combination of coursework and experiential learning built around our Abilities Model. This skills-based learning approach includes the following: First-Year Experience, Integrative Career Development, Core curriculum, Major curriculum and exploratory electives. Every program at Mitchell offers unique opportunities to our broad spectrum of students for their educational, occupational and lifestyle pursuits.

The Criminal Justice program features:


  • Hands-on learning as a way for students to explore, retain and experiment within their field of study
  • Wraparound supports that offer resources and promote community-building within the learning process
  • Organizations and activities to build community with peers, learn and have fun: 
    1. Criminal Justice Club
    2. Criminal Justice Honor Society
  • Internship Opportunities offering real-world experience to enhance our students’ education journey 
  • Service learning that combines learning objectives with community service in ways that can benefit both student growth and the community
  • Research that offers students the opportunities to delve deeper into subject areas of interest with faculty guidance
  • Minor and/or Microcredential(s) allowing students more compact, narrowly focused courses to develop specific skills in their area of study 
, Mitchell College
, Mitchell College
, Mitchell College

Career Pathways

The Criminal Justice program prepares students for a wide variety of careers in:

  • Law Enforcement
  • Corrections
  • Courts
  • Emergency Management and Dispatch
  • Juvenile Justice
  • Probation and Parole
  • Federal Government
  • Security
  • Victim and Offender Advocacy
    , Mitchell College

    Aicha Santos ’22, who majored in criminal justice with a minor in psychology, came to Mitchell College as a non-traditional student, having taken some classes at a community college several years past when her son was a young child. Despite the challenges of being a working mom (with a teenager) and a college student, with the support of Mitchell faculty and staff she not only succeded in her coursework but completed an internship with the State’s Attorney’s Office in New London.


    , Mitchell College

    As far back as second grade, Sam Sabilia ’18 dreamed of being a police officer. Now he is one. He credits Mitchell College with helping him successfully land a job with the New Britain [Conn.] Police Department, less than six months after he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.


    , Mitchell College

    South Dakota native Mariah Zell ’17 can thank her high school online gaming friends for helping her find Mitchell College. In addition to studying criminal justice with a pre-law concentration at Mitchell, she participated in the Criminal Justice Club and volunteered in the New London community and around Mitchell, including a soup kitchen, a homeless shelter and doing a campus cleanup. After graduating from Mitchell she attended the University of St. Thomas School of Law in Minneapolis and later got a position at Kowitz Law, a private law firm in Lindstrom, Minnesota, while studying for the bar exam.


    , Mitchell College

    After graduating from Mitchell College with a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, Willeen Pun ’17 earned a Master of Public Administration (MPA) from the University of New Haven and worked as a correction officer for the Connecticut Department of Correction, with the ultimate goal of working for the Federal Bureau of Investigation. She credits her path to these accomplishments with the three words she uses to describe Mitchell College: leadership, professionalism and opportunity.


    Sample Coursework: 4-Year Overview

    View the College Catalog for full descriptions of these courses.

    Year 1
    Fall Semester Cr. Spring Semester Cr.
    CW101: Introduction to College
    3 CW102: College Writing and Research 3
    FC101: Seminar I Compass 3 FC102: Seminar II Journey 3
    CJ101: Introduction to
    Criminal Justice
    3 CJ245: Criminology 3
    General Education selection 3 FC105: New London: Then and Now 3
    Explore 3 General Education (Lab Science) 3
    Fall Credits: 15 Spring Credits: 15
    Total First Year Credits 30
    Fall Semester Cr. Spring Semester Cr.
    CJ261: Criminal Law 3 CJ249: Corrections in Society 3
    HD110: Race, Ethnicity, and
    3 HS230: Career Seminar 3
    CJ257: Drugs, Law &
    3 CJ251: Juvenile Delinquency & the Juvenile Justice Systemnile Justice System 3
    General Education selection 3 General Education selection 3
    Explore 3 Explore 3
    Fall Credits: 15 Spring Credits: 15
    Total Second Year Credits 30
    Year 3
    Fall Semester Cr. Spring Semester Cr.
    CJ312: Diversity Issues in CJ 3 CJ331: Scientific Methods in CJ 3
    General Education selection 3 CJ314: Victimology 3
    General Education selection 3 CJ320: Criminal Procedure 3
    CJ315: The Administration of
    3 IN450A: Internship I 3
    Explore 3 Explore 3
    Fall Credits: 15 Spring Credits: 15
    Total Third Year Credits 30
    Year 4
    Fall Semester Cr. Spring Semester Cr.
    CJ420: Case Management 3 CJ322: Policing in a Free Society 3
    CJ441: Senior Seminar in
    Criminal Justicece
    3 CJ445: Ethics in Criminal Justice 3
    General Education selection 3 Explore 3
    Explore 3 Explore 3
    Explore 3 Explore 3
    Fall Credits: 15 Spring Credits: 15
    Total Fourth Year Credits 30
    Total Credits to Graduate: 120

    Ready for the Next Step?