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Criminal Justice

MCC criminal justice class

Criminal justice is one of the fastest growing, most diverse industries in the country. Personal characteristics such as honesty, sound judgment, integrity, and a sense of responsibility are especially important in this field. The ability to relate to a variety of people is also important. The hiring process will typically include criminal background checks, medical/psychological exams, physical agility tests, general knowledge written exams, interviews, polygraph exams, and drug testing.

MCC’s Criminal Justice Programs

MCC offers two areas of study: Corrections and Law Enforcement. The Corrections track prepares students for immediate employment in corrections, probation and parole, juvenile justice, and county jails. The Law Enforcement track prepares students for immediate employment in law enforcement, security, loss prevention, and social work. Graduates of these programs work as corrections officers, police officers, investigators, detectives, probation/patrol officers, security personnel, and in other law enforcement positions.

There’s also a two-year Associate of Arts (AA) transfer degree for those who want to transfer their credits and complete a bachelor’s degree. You can discuss your specific career interests with the Criminal Justice Department.

  1. A two-year Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree with a Corrections Track for those who want to go directly into the corrections workforce after graduation.
  2. A two-year Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree with a Law Enforcement Track for those who want to go directly into the law enforcement workforce after graduation.
  3. A two-year Criminal Justice Associate of Arts (AA) transfer degree for those who want to transfer their MCC credits and complete a baccalaureate/bachelor’s degree at a university.

The links under Degrees Awarded (below) specify our different program course requirements.

Admissions Partnership Program with Iowa State, UNI and Iowa

MCC participates in the Admissions Partnership Program with Iowa State University, the University of Northern Iowa and the University of Iowa to enable MCC students to transfer credits seamlessly to any of the state universities. Participants are dual-enrolled at MCC and the university with access to academic advising and student services at both institutions. The universities guarantee admission into the desired degree program, provided all requirements are met. Ask the MCC Admissions Office for more information!

Criminal Justice Careers & Job Outlook

Police officers protect lives and property. Detectives and criminal investigators gather facts and collect evidence. Law enforcement officers’ duties depend on the size and type of organization in which they’re employed. Police and detective work can be physically demanding, stressful, and dangerous. Education requirements range from a high school diploma to a college degree or advanced degree. Most police officers and detectives must graduate from their agency’s training academy before getting on-the-job training; candidates must be U.S. citizens, usually at least 21 years old, and meet rigorous physical and personal qualifications.

Employment of police and detectives is projected to grow 5 percent through 2028, about as fast as the average for all occupations. The continued need for public safety is expected to lead to new openings for officers, although demand may vary by location. The median annual wage for police and detectives was $63,380 in 2018.

Follow these links to find additional up-to-date information on the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook website:

Additional Resources


Faculty Contact

Brian Agnitsch

Brian Agnitsch



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