Are you putting off a career in Criminal Justice because you think you can’t afford the education? Are you interested in a Criminal Justice education but think that you do not qualify for financial aid and scholarships? With the average college education costing between twenty and forty thousand dollars, it is no wonder that prospective Criminal Justice students are deterred from pursuing the education that they desire. If you would seriously like to pursue a Criminal Justice career but don’t think you can afford it, you may want to reconsider. According to the College Board, the scholarship pot has now grown to between sixty-eight and seventy-two million dollars.
The fact is that there are scholarships out there for a Criminal Justice degree, especially for minority populations, although to attain them takes perseverance, knowledge, and dedication. There are many resources available to students interested in scholarships for a Criminal Justice degree. Your educational institute can provide you with information about state and government resources from the United States Department of Education including the State Student Incentive Grant Program (SSIG). The primary education agencies in your area can also give you information regarding scholarships including the Robert C. Byrd Honors Scholarship Program. Additionally, the AmeriCorps program provides scholarship funds in exchange for community services. These scholarship funds can be used for a Criminal Justice degree or to pay off student loans. The Internet and your local library also provide education in obtaining scholarships for a Criminal Justice degree and don’t forget the myriad of companies, church organizations, community organizations, civic groups, and labor unions that provide scholarship funds as well. A word of caution, however, about pursuing scholarships for a Criminal Justice degree online. If a scholarship matching service seems to good to be true, it probably is. Beware of services that require a deposit or fee in exchange for scholarships matches that take your money but don’t return any results.
Your chances of finding a scholarship for a Criminal Justice degree are greatly improved by following certain steps recommended by educators and counselors. High school students pursuing a scholarship for a Criminal Justice degree should spend their Senior year applying for scholarships and not searching for them. Scholarships funds can be awarded as early as eighth grade so the earlier students begin their search, the better. Another important point to remember is that many scholarship granters for Criminal Justice degrees are more interested in humanitarian or community involvement than in academic performance, so getting involved in a common good is a great way to be ahead of the competition. Also, don not limit your scholarship searches to bottomless pits of information like the library or Internet, but instead lead your search by being specific about what arena of Criminal Justice for which you plan to use your scholarship funds. Searching on a national level can be lucrative, but don’t forget to get the word around locally through your families and friends and their places of involvement. Perhaps the best tip is to be persistent and not to get discouraged when turned down. Additionally, adhere to the basic rules of scholarship application etiquette: always type your application, don’t send any materials not specifically requested, complete the application in full, and always submit your application by the deadline indicated.