Criminal Justice Institute adds Ph.D. program

The Criminal Justice Institute will add a Ph.D. program in fall of 2011. The classes will only be available online.

Tammy Kushner, Psy. D., exec-utive associate dean in the Criminal Justice Institute, said NSU added the program because of the demand for trained professionals.

“Beyond the jobs that are commonly-known such as police officer or corrections officer, exist opportunities in private investigation, private security, corporate security and threat assessment,” she said.

Kushner said the university conducted extensive research before starting the program. Students in the master’s program also expressed interest in a Ph.D. program. Kushner said their input was critical.

Krystle Juman, second-year student in the criminal justice master’s program, said she thought the program was worth the investment.

“It opens more avenues for [students] to reach their goals or to do something they really love and not something they have to do,” she said. “Although times are tough economically, the program will pay for itself if the student follow through with it.”

Students will have the option of choosing three concentrations: organizational leadership, behavioral science and juvenile justice. They will take classes in theories of crime, criminal law and applied statistics.

“As the program grows, we expect to expand on the specialty offerings to further appeal to a wide variety of student interests and to allow our students to affect change within the most active and exciting segments in the field of criminal justice,” Kushner said.

The program is offered online in order to reach a broader variety of students.

“Considering that NSU is a leader at the forefront of online classroom learning, it was a natural fit to offer such a program,” she said. “Online education is expanding across the globe and advanced studies in specific areas such as criminal justice allow working professionals and industry leaders to receive a Ph.D. without scheduling or geographic limitations.”

Interested students must have a master’s degree in criminal justice. Kushner also said students entering the criminal justice field must have a range of other applicable qualities.

“[They] need to be analytical yet communicative, quick to act yet cautious, independent and a team player,” she said.

The application deadline is May 27. Students may apply online at

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