Criminal Justice Schools in North Carolina | NC

North Carolina State Criminal Justice Degrees

North Carolina’s crime rate is approximately 18% higher compared to the rest of the country, according to the National Institute of Corrections. Its property crime rate is 21% higher than the national average. It is no surprise then that the U.S. Department of Justice counted 504 local and state law enforcement agencies with over 23,000 sworn officers in 2008. If you would like to become a police officer or sheriff’s deputy, check the list of criminal justice schools in North Carolina for information on law enforcement or other similar degrees. Many law enforcement agencies prefer candidates to have a minimum of an Associate’s degree and/or related experience.

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Other criminal justice career opportunities exist in North Carolina. For example, it is one of five states with the highest number of paralegals and legal assistants, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You will see that a number of the criminal justice schools in North Carolina offer either campus or online paralegal degree and certificate programs. The career outlook for several professions looks very promising, including for probation officers and correctional treatment specialists, forensic science technicians and lawyers. You could complete a criminal justice degree in North Carolina with a specialization in corrections, law enforcement, probation, human services/social work, forensic science, legal studies and law to pursue these thriving careers.

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North Carolina Criminal Justice Career Outlook

A number of criminal justice careers in North Carolina show a positive outlook for growth. These include (with their estimated number of annual job openings provided by Projections Central):

  • Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers – 590 openings/year
  • Detectives and Criminal Investigators – 80 openings/year
  • First-line Supervisors of Police and Detectives -190 openings/year
  • Correctional Officers and Jailers – 460 openings/year
  • Forensic Science Technicians – 30 openings/year
  • Lawyers – 450 openings/year
  • Paralegals – 350 openings/year
  • Private Detectives and Investigators – 30 openings/year
  • Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists – 110 openings/year
  • Emergency Management Specialists – 20 openings/year

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The criminal justice schools in North Carolina offer either online or campus programs to help you become prepared and qualified for these growing careers. If you wish to become a paralegal, you could complete a paralegal degree program or relevant courses. After working in the legal profession for some time, you may decide to upgrade your education to complete a law degree, write the bar exam and become an attorney.

Alternatively, perhaps you would prefer to complete a criminal justice degree in North Carolina majoring in forensic science to become a skilled technician to analyze key evidence as part of criminal investigations. Or after serving on the force for several years, you could upgrade your post secondary studies to complete a Masters in Law Enforcement, Criminal Justice or Criminology to become detective or first-line supervisor of police. The possibilities are endless!

North Carolina Criminal Justice & Legal Job Outlook & North Carolina Criminal Justice Salary

CareerEmployment Growth through 2018Current Average Salary
Police and Sheriff’s Patrol Officers4%$38,000 – 43,000
Correctional Officers and Jailers3%$30,000 – 33,000
Court Reporters22%$50,000 – 53,000
Detectives and Criminal Investigators2%$50,000 – 52,000
First-line Supervisors of Police and Detectives4%$58,000 – 61,000
Private Detectives and Investigators19%$50,000 – 54,000
Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists13%$36,000 – 40,000
Paralegals and Legal Assistants27%$40,000 – 43,000
Emergency Management Specialists16%$55,000 – 60,000
Forensic Science Technicians12%$40,000 – 48,000
Lawyers12%$118,000 – 128,000

Sources: Growth Projections ~ Salary Range

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North Carolina Crime Rate

North Carolina’s property crime rate is around 21% higher while its violent crime rate is 1% lower than the country’s average, according to the National Institute of Corrections. In 2010, the FBI calculated approximately 3,447 property crimes and 363 violent crimes per 100,000 people in NC. (Property crimes include burglaries, motor vehicle thefts and larceny; violent crimes include murder, rape, aggravated assault and robbery).

Also in 2010, Dr. Andrew Schiller and his researchers determined that two of North Carolina’s urban areas made it to the country’s top 25 dangerous neighborhood list. Charlotte’s North Tryon Street ranked 11th place with an individual having a 1 in 9 chance of falling victim to a violent crime; East 21st Street in Winston-Salem ranked 16th place with an individual having a 1 in 10 chance of falling victim.

North Carolina’s Correctional System Stats

FacilityNumber of Facilities & OfficesNumber of Inmates
Probation & Parole43110,125


Degrees by State