Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice Cougar Map

The Cougar Map is intended to guide you with suggestions for potential activities and career paths that can help you along your educational journey. Although everyone has different abilities, experiences and challenges, this Cougar Map can be used with the help of your advisors to prepare for the future you want with a clear vision of your college-to-career pathway. Please refer to the SXU Academic Catalog and academic planning resources for detailed degree requirements.

Sharpen intellectual and practical skills First Year Second Year Third Year Fourth Year
  • Critical reading
  • Foreign language
  • Social scientific thinking
  • Academic writing
  • Research
  • Collaboration
  • Leadership
  • Reasoning
  • Concept formation
  • Creative thinking
  • Critical thinking
  • Problem-solving
  • Writing
  • Advanced research
  • Networking
  • Theoretical application
  • Public speaking
Engage with key resources on campus

Visit the Learning Center/Writing Center for tutoring assistance.

Attend Career Services programs and events.

Visit the Robert and Mart Rita Murphy Stump Library for study sessions and research.

Meet with your advisor regarding a possible minor.

Work with the Learning Center/Writing Center to improve your writing.

Compose your resume and cover letter and meet with Career Services for review.

Attend our Internship and Job Fair each semester to meet with employers.

Attend all criminal justice, law and graduate school fairs.

Meet with your advisor to be sure you are making good progress toward graduation.

Attend criminal justice networking events.

Complete your petition to graduate.

Visit Career Services for help with resume, mock interviews, internship and full-time positions

Connect with the Alumni Association and look for social and networking events to attend.

Explore your global and social responsibility through leadership and service

Join Cougars LEAD and begin working toward a leadership certificates.

Join registered student organizations and participate in University activities found on the Den.

In the spring, apply for X-Factor Leadership opportunities, such as RA.

Volunteer at a local organization.

Continue working on the Cougars LEAD certificate.

Consider studying abroad.

Attend the Synergy Leadership Conference.

Obtain a leadership position in a registered student organization.

Participate in a Spring Break Service Trip.

Complete the Cougars LEAD leadership certificate by designing an independent service or leadership project.

Present your research at an academic or professional conference.

Explore opportunities for local volunteering.

Explore potential career opportunities and pre-professional experiences

Apply for on-campus employment or look for part-time jobs in the area to build your resume.

Attend Cougars Connect Networking Night in the fall and meet alumni working in a variety of fields.

Research career options with Career Services and your advisor

Explore internships in a variety of settings. Some possibilities are Cook County Circuit Court, Cook County State's Attorney, Chicago Police Department, Target (Protection Specialist) or BPI.

Explore internship options with law enforcement, courts, corrections or social service agencies.

Join student chapters of professional organizations to gain career information and to start networking.

Consider taking the GRE or LSAT if planning to go to graduate or law school.

Research companies/organizations and the career opportunities they offer.

Take your graduate exams early and apply to schools/programs in December or January.

Plan for productive and meaningful summers

Establish your LinkedIn account and connect with fellow students, faculty and staff.

Use CourseNetworking to build an online portfolio.

Complete your Handshake account and use it to search for on- and off-campus positions.

Apply for summer internships that offer relevant experience in areas of interest.

Begin developing a project based on your research interests.

Consider a second internship in a different setting. Some employers to consider: Chicago Crime Commission, Federal Reserve Bank, FBI, Illinois State Police or the SAFER Foundation.

Conduct a research project.

Ask faculty for letters of recommendation and previous employers to be references for your job search.

Actively apply for positions.

Use your unique skills to help others in need.