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Criminal Justice

Major in Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice is a wide-ranging field that is primarily concerned with understanding the origins, nature, and consequences of criminal behavior and societal reactions to crime. As a profession, it focuses on careers directly related to social institutions of law, law enforcement, and the legal system.


About The Program

One of only two true liberal arts criminal justice programs in the nation and one of the most popular majors on campus, the Department of Criminal Justice at Virginia Wesleyan offers a line-up of core and allied courses which provide a practical liberal arts perspective of a rapidly growing field. Unique due to its incorpora­ tion of other disciplines within the liberal arts framework, it meets and exceeds the minimal standards set by the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences. Students in the criminal justice pro­ gram receive classroom instruction as well as real-world experiences through simulations, internships, and other teaching tools that con­ tribute to the applied nature of the program.

Major: Criminal Justice (BA)
Minor: Criminal Justice

Chair: Dr. Thomas S. Liverman,
School: Birdsong School of Social Science


The classroom experience is complemented by an in­ ternship experience, which is an elective for our crimi ­ nal justice majors and can be completed in one of a variety of areas. Students may complete an 8-credit, 300-hour internship during the course of a semester. Internships are personally supervised by the Director of Internships. Examples of internship sites include:

  • Federal Law Enforcement (FBI, DEA, U.S. Marshals, and NCIS)
  • State/Local Police
  • Social Services
  • Probation/Parole
  • Court Support and Corrections

With close to a 100% retention rate for the depart­ ment, criminal justice graduates have had great success getting into graduate and law schools across the country, and obtaining positions with a number of federal, state, and local agencies. Between 80 and 85 percent of seniors in internships receive job offers upon graduation from Virginia Wesleyan. Gradu­ ates from the criminal justice program at VWU are employed in a number of fields, organizations, and agencies, including:

  • Federal Law Enforcement
  • State/ Local Police
  • Court Support
  • Forensics
  • Probation/ Parole
  • and Victim Advocacy