Criminal Justice (CJ)

You are interested in serving the public as a police, probation, parole, or corrections officer. You might even be interested in becoming an federal agent for a variety of agencies. Mid's career-ready and transfer pathways within the Criminal Justice Program, prepare you for success.

Many of Mid's instructors work as attorneys, judges, prosecutors, and officers. They are passionate about the criminal justice field and care about you and your goals.

CJ Alward chose to start at Mid.

Mid was the right place to start.

I chose a career in law enforcement early on and knew Mid was the place to go. I took an introduction to criminal justice course when I was in high school and enjoyed it so much that it was an easy decision to attend Mid after graduating from Gladwin High School.

Although my time at Mid was short, the staff and instructors made my education, transfer process, and eventually the start of my career a smooth process. My knowledge of law enforcement started at Mid, and although my continuing education has carried on elsewhere, I have never forgotten my roots.

The instructors were always very thorough in their topics, and if something was confusing, they always made sure it was cleared up. My career has taken me to the Michigan State Police, but I will always remember how Mid was there for me and my fellow students.

I am now an alumnus of Mid Michigan College, and always highly recommend Mid to anyone interested in gaining an education.

- CJ Alward


Law Enforcement - Certificate

Mid’s Law Enforcement Certificate is designed to provide Clinton County Regional Educational Service Agency (CCRESA) students with a credential representing the skills they have gained studying criminal justice while in high school. These credits ladder into Mid’s associate degree pathway as well.

Criminal Justice MiTransfer - Associate in Arts

You are interested in a four-year degree or beyond in Criminal Justice, and imagine a future career in the criminal justice field such as a probation officer, parole officer, or in other careers at the local, state, and federal level. Our Criminal Justice MiTransfer pathway prepares you to transfer to and succeed in a four-year college or university program.

Pre-Service - Associate in Applied Science

This pathway is designed to successfully Standards (MCOLES) police academy. Mid has transfer agreements with Delta College’s and Kirtland Community College’s Police Academies, as well as numerous others across the State. You will complete 46 credits at Mid, learning the fundamentals necessary to protect and serve as a police officer. Upon successful completion of the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) curriculum you are awarded an additional 16 credits.

State Corrections - Certificate

Mid’s Criminal Justice State Corrections Certificate Pathway is offered in partnership with the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC). This certificate provides you with the 15 credits required for employment with the MDOC, and those credits ladder into the College’s associate degree pathway—saving you time and money as you expand your skillset. Includes the five core courses that have been developed by the Michigan Correctional Officers’ Training Council.

State Corrections - Associate in Applied Science

You are interested in creating a secure and safe environment for inmates of state correctional facilities as a correctional officer. This pathway is offered in conjunction with the Michigan Department of Corrections. Its five core courses have been established by the Michigan Correctional Officers’ Training Council, and once completed, will provide you with State certification. Beyond that, Mid’s associate degree provides a broad base of knowledge that prepares you to succeed as a State correctional officer.

Why Choose Mid?

Mid Michigan College offers four criminal justice programs to accommodate various career goals including law enforcement, state corrections, and local detention.

If you're interested in pursuing a bachelor degree in criminal justice, our transfer pathway allows you to complete your first two years at Mid.

Our program provides you with the best opportunities to achieve the education, specialized knowledge, and skills needed to attain their career goals.

Instruction beyond the books

Mid's CJ instructors teach because it's their passion, and bring real-world knowledge and experience into the classroom. During the day, they work as attorneys, judges, prosecutors, state police officers, and state and federal parole officers. They get to know you and they care about helping you achieve your goals.

Confidence in the making

We have your back. Our instructors and staff recognize and applaud your current skills and push you to reach the next level. Responsible, professional, and intelligent public servants are needed, and we are dedicated to training them at Mid.

Track Record of Success

Our transfer partners, like Kirtland Community College and Delta College, consistently report that Mid Michigan College's students come well-prepared and succeed at their Police Academies.

Mid maintains outstanding relationships with local, state, and county agencies to assist our graduates in finding meaningful employment.

Career Outlook

Annual Median Pay

  • Police Officers: $63,380/year
  • Probation/Parole Officers: $53,020/year
  • Corrections Officers: $44,400/year

Hourly Median Pay

  • Police Officers: $30.47/hour
  • Probation/Parole Officers: $25.49/hour
  • Corrections Officers: $21.35/hour

Job Outlook

  • Police Officers: 7% Growth
  • Probation/Parole Officers: 6% Growth
  • Corrections Officers: -7% Decline

Data sourced from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and valid 2016 through 2026.

Research Careers

O*NET OnLine has detailed descriptions of the world of work for use by job seekers, workforce development, HR professionals, students, researchers, and more!

Summary Report for Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officers

Research Criminal Justice-related careers

State Standards

State of Michigan Hiring Standards for State Corrections Officers

To become a State Corrections Officer, each new candidate is required to meet all of the minimum standards established and adopted by the Michigan Department of Corrections.

The applicant must meet the following required minimum standards.
  • Not less than 18 years old
  • Possess high school diploma or equivalency
  • The Department of Corrections may screen out job applicants who have been convicted of a felony in accordance with Public Act 191 of 2017.
    • Applicants who have been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony are ineligible for employment with the Department of Corrections until satisfactory completion of any sentence imposed, including parole or probation.
Applicants must agree to obtain the minimum college credits (listed below) within 18 months after hire OR currently possess:
  • An educational background that includes at least 15 semester (or 23 term) college credit hours in Corrections, Criminal Justice, Psychology, Sociology, Family Relations, Guidance and Counseling, Pastoral Counseling, Social Work or Law Enforcement or;
  • 30 semester (or 45 term) college credits in any academic or degree prerequisite area meets the educational requirement or;
  • Any bachelor’s degree or;
  • Two years of satisfactory Corrections Officer employment at the State or federal prison level, or private prison housing state/federal prisoners.


  • Training/Education documented on your joint services transcript may satisfy these educational requirements. Completion of basic training and two years of military service, along with 15 semester/ 23 term college credits leading toward a degree in any major obtained through an accredited college or Joint Services Transcript (JST).
  • If the service member is no longer serving, they must present proof of being honorably discharged. Military personnel can receive college credit for their military training by obtaining a Joint Service Transcript.

Local Standards

State of Michigan Hiring Standards for Local Corrections Officers

To become a Local Corrections Officer, each new candidate is required to meet all of the minimum standards established and adopted by the Michigan Sheriffs’ Coordinating and Training Council (MSCTC) under the authority of Section 8 of Public Act 125 of 2003. The Sheriff’s Office has the responsibility to screen candidates to ensure compliance with all minimum standards.

Please Note: County Sheriff’s Offices have the discretion to establish standards that exceed the MSCTC minimum standards as long as the agency can justify the higher standard in relation to the position.
The applicant must meet the following required minimum standards.
  • Not less than 18 years old, no maximum age
  • Must be a United States Citizen
  • Possess high school diploma or equivalency
  • Possess a valid driver’s license
  • Complete an oral interview to determine acceptability for a corrections officer position
  • No prior felony convictions
  • Possess good moral character as determined by a favorable comprehensive background investigation covering school and employment records, home environment, personal traits, and integrity
    • Consideration will be given to all criminal and civil law violations as indicating a lack of good character.
  • Provide fingerprints for a search of state and federal fingerprint files to disclose any criminal record
  • Complete drug testing for the use of illegal controlled substances
    • The testing will be completed after a conditional offer of employment (ADA Requirement)
  • Candidate is required to demonstrate his or her mental fitness by successfully completing both of the following requirements:
    • Prior to employment, complete the MSCTC written examination, which tests the candidate's mental fitness in the areas of reading comprehension, writing skills, and situational reasoning.
      • Written exam results are valid for three years from successful completion of the test.
    • After a conditional offer of employment, an evaluation by a licensed health care professional must be completed, which demonstrates that the applicant is free from mental or emotional instabilities which may impair the performance of the essential job functions of a local corrections officer.
  • Local Corrections Officer Physical Ability Test (LCOPAT)
    • Beginning March 1, 2014, each local corrections officer applicant is required to demonstrate their physical ability by successfully completing the Michigan Sheriffs’ Coordinating and Training Council (MSCTC) Local Corrections Officer Physical Ability Test (LCOPAT) before being hired as a local corrections officer.
      • No other physical fitness/physical ability test will meet the requirements. The LCOPAT is designed to simulate the physical aspects of the local corrections officer profession and is made up of different components that address a specific physical ability or job task.
      • Prior to completing the LCOPAT applicants must provide a Health Screening Form, review the LCOPAT Guide, and pay the test fee.
        • LCOPAT test sites approved by the MSCTC have the authority to establish a fee for administering the LCOPAT at their facility. However, the fee shall not exceed a cost of $50.00 per student/per test.
      • It is the applicant's responsibility to provide proof of successful completion of the LCOPAT to a potential employer. The test results of the LCOPAT are valid for one year from successful completion of the test.

Michigan Transfer Network

MiTRansfer pathways

Mid Michigan College is a participating member in MiTransfer Pathways, a Statewide agreement that identifies courses students should complete as a part of an associate degree that will transfer seamlessly toward a bachelor degree and simplify the transfer process. Mid's Criminal Justice Law Enforcement MiTransfer Pathway is part of MiTransfer Pathways and can provide you with guidance about transferring specific courses to multiple colleges and universities in Michigan.

The Michigan Transfer Network website allows you to view transfer course equivalencies between many Michigan colleges and universities. If you would like to go back to school, transfer to another college or university in Michigan, or simply see how courses at Mid would transfer to another school, this site is for you!

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