Violence on the border could mean more jobs for Criminal Justice grads

Because of the increasing violence along the Mexican border by drug cartels, the United States government is now sending more agents to the border to stem the violence.

According to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) website:

“Our nation’s southern border has experienced a dramatic surge in cross-border crime and violence in recent years due to intense competition between Mexican drug cartels and criminal smuggling organizations that employ predatory tactics to realize their profits.”

Over 6,000 people were killed in drug related violence in Mexico in 2008.

All the violence associated with these drug cartels inadvertently spills over into the U.S., putting American citizens at risk. While the job description may be anything but appealing to the majority of college students, the fact that so much law enforcement is needed along the border stands to help a lot of Sam Houston State criminal justice graduates find a job.

Director and dean of the Criminal Justice Center, Vincent Webb, said U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has a great need for criminal justice undergraduate degree holders to carry out the daunting task required of ICE agents.

“The opportunities are excellent and the probability of being hired is quite good,” said Webb. “However, a relatively small proportion of students choose that career path, often because they can be assigned to any of a number of different locations across the U.S., both along our borders [and] inland as well.”

Not surprisingly, not everybody wants to be working the border at Baudette, Minnesota, or some remote location along the North Dakota border, said Webb.

The criminal justice majors at SHSU who have an emphasis in law enforcement are headed down the right path to becoming a ICE agent, and helping halt drug cartel violence along the Mexican border.

According to the Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook, most federal agencies require their agents to have at least a bachelor’s degree. In 2006, police and detectives held approximately 861,000 jobs in the U.S. with 79 percent working for local government, 11 percent employed by state governments and seven percent working for various Federal agencies. The Handbook also said that employment of police and detectives is expected to grow by 11 percent over the 2006-2016 decade, which is above average for all occupations in the U.S.

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