The Criminal Justice and Criminology Department at Loyola University invites its majors and minors with good academic standing to apply for the CJC 390 Capstone Experience Internship course (or CJC 502 Field Practicum course for CJC graduate students).
For undergraduates, the internship course is an approved "Engaged Learning" course that fulfills the university requirement of taking one such course, and is also an optional substitute for the CJC major requirement of the CJC 399 Senior Capstone course. It is a graded, 3 to 6-credit-hour course. Each internship is taken for a minimum of 3 credit hours. Students may take the course twice, using the first 3 credit hours for the aforementioned university Engaged Learning and Senior Capstone requirements, and a second internship for CJC major or minor elective credit. Registration requires the consent of the Internship Director.
The primary purpose of the internship or field practicum is the enhancement of the student’s educational and professional development and learning through an observational and participatory experience.
The internship is viewed as the culmination of extensive preparatory academic work, enabling the student to apply considerable sophistication and background information (conceptual, theoretical, methodological) to the concrete needs of a practical agency setting.
The undergraduate internship program is available to CJC majors and minors who are juniors or seniors and who have taken four or more criminal justice and criminology courses. While there is no specific minimum GPA requirement, it is the policy of the department to make the internship experience available only to those students whose academic performance is deemed adequate in the judgment of the Internship Director for their intended placement, and whose field performance will reflect the high standards of the department and the university.
Students interested in enrolling in the undergraduate internship program should first meet with the Internship Director. If the student is deemed qualified to enroll in CJC 390, he or she will submit an application and waiver of liability forms at that meeting. The student and the director will discuss the student's career interests, and the director will advise the student of available field placements that will further those interests.
Students are discouraged from submitting multiple applications to various agencies. The department has an outstanding reputation among criminal justice agencies for providing students of a high caliber who are ready willing, and able to accept an offered placement. Applications to the criminal justice agencies often require background checks, interviews, etc., and agencies do not want to waste time considering applicants who choose other placement offers. If students submitted multiple applications year after year the department's reputation will suffer, and these cooperating agencies will no longer want to spend time reviewing LUC criminal justice students' applications. In consultation with the director, student will -- with some exceptions -- compile a short list of preferred agencies, and apply in order to each of them as needed.
For some placements, especially those in federal agencies, it is incumbent upon the student to submit his or her application early in the semester preceding their intended placement, and sometimes even nine months before the expected start date. Early submissions will increase the likelihood of obtaining the selected placement in those federal agencies.
Student interns are expected to fulfill all their obligations to the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology and the agency to which they are assigned as stipulated in the CJC 390 (or CJC 502, for CJC graduate students) course syllabus, and other policies as required by the placement sites.
The precise agency, location, and nature of the internship are agreed upon with each student, with placements targeted which maximize benefits for both student and agency. Career goals, academic preparation, convenience of location, etc., are taken into consideration in the internship planning process.
The agency agrees to provide the student with a substantive learning experience that may include research, on-the-job-training, observational learning, actual job performance—singly or in combination. Every student's internship experience is different, even at the same agency or office. The department cannot guarantee any particular form of experience, such as a certain number of ride-alongs or a particular experience, that a student might have heard that another student had at the same agency.
Each student intern is assigned an agency supervisor to monitor, supervise, and evaluate assignments and performance. The agency supervisor communicates with the Internship Director as needed, and submits a final written evaluation of the student’s task performance. Students also submit a paper based on their experiences. Additional requirements are set forth in the syllabus provided to each student upon meeting with the Internship Director.
For information, please contact:
William C. Watkins, PhD
Lecturer, Undergraduate Director and Internship Director
Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology
Loyola University Chicago Mundelein Center, Room 807D
1032 W. Sheridan Road
Chicago, Illinois 60660
Fields for Available Placement
- Corrections (jails and prisons, county and federal)
- Courts (circuit court clerk offices)
- Law Enforcement (municipal, county, state, and federal)
- Prosecutor, Public Defender, and Private Law Offices
- Private Security
- Probation and Parole (juvenile and adult, state and federal)
- Victim-Witness Advocacy
- Social Service Agencies and Non-Profits
- Other Government Agencies
Click here for Representative Participating Agencies.