Criminal Justice (B.A.)

Criminal Justice Major

School of Business, Education and Social Sciences

Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice students at Messiah College examine the nature and cause of crime and the impact of crime upon individuals and society. The Criminal Justice major at Messiah College is an interdisciplinary major dedicated to education, research, and an emphasis on service. Consistent with current standards of education in Criminal Justice, the curriculum introduces students to critical areas within the criminal justice system including corrections, probation and parole, juvenile justice, criminological theories and criminal law. The coursework is complemented with ongoing interaction with guest speakers representing local law enforcement and federal agencies such as Homeland Security, the FBI and the NSA.

Students are encouraged to engage in research projects, some of which are presented at national conferences. Criminal Justice majors complete internships with a variety of settings available such as probation and parole, correction settings, agencies with specific focuses such as human trafficking and social service agencies assisting newly released prisoners to their community reintegration. These experiences enable students to apply coursework across an agency experience.

The program prepares students as generalists for initial criminal justice careers and positions them for graduate work in criminal justice, law, public administration and the social sciences. The Criminal Justice program's commitment to transformative and restorative justice principles prepare our graduates as ethical and caring servants foremost, rather than just law enforcement agents. 

As a criminal justice major at Messiah College, you’ll be able to:

  • Articulate a Christian perspective of criminal justice and those impacted by the criminal justice system
  • Analyze and critique the role and impact of criminal justice upon our contemporary culture
  • discuss and compare global applications of criminal justice with a focus upon Western cultures
  • Understand how race and ethnicity, wealth, gender and power relate to crime, victimization, and criminal justice
  • view criminal justice through the lens of restorative and transformative justice
  • express how one applies their own faith commitment to the criminal justice enterprise and how it enables them to promote justice

Major Requirements

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Criminal justice

Students develop a deep understanding of the relationship between individuals and society, and they are equipped to be agents of social change.

Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice
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High rate of job placement in social service and business.
High rate of acceptance to graduate schools.
Faculty hold advanced degrees from quality universities and have extensive practical experience in research and social service programs and administration.
Social Resource Room available for study, small group meetings and research.
Faculty represent diversity of age, perspective and experience.
Innovative approaches to teaching and learning through use of technology and a wide range of classroom experiences.

Mission Statement

The Messiah College Criminal Justice program strives to integrate course material with a Christian world view. A career in criminal justice potentially yields to a lifelong rewarding career, but recognized are the inherent challenges arising from face-to-face encounters within a fallen and depraved world. The coursework prepares the mind for critical thinking skills while developing values and morals prepares the heart for service. The Criminal Justice program's emphasis upon restorative and transformative justice, equip graduates to pursue justice in light of grace and mercy within a criminal justice system that is anchored in punishment and retribution.