Arts & Sciences

Criminal Justice

Learn to serve and protect

A Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice helps you develop skills to make a difference in your community




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Criminal justice majors learn the skills necessary to be successful in a variety of different occupations. Instead of focusing on what you would learn at a police academy, FinnU’s criminal justice program focuses on the larger scope of skills that are applicable to the field. Skills such as writing, ethics, public speaking and how to utilize data-driven statistics and research methods.


Criminal justice encompasses a number of different disciplines and interests. In order to explore these interests, FinnU’s criminal justice program allows you to select a final capstone research project that will help with your career goals or academic interests. In addition, if there is a topic you are interested in exploring and FinnU does not offer a class on it, our faculty will work with you to develop a customized class based on your interest and need.


Criminal justice majors have the opportunity to travel abroad to learn more about other justice systems from around the world. From Finland to the former Soviet Union, you are introduced to how social justice is viewed in a different context.


A degree in criminal justice sets you up for success in whatever criminal justice field you are interested in pursuing. FinnU’s criminal justice program boasts a high job placement rate after college in organizations ranging in the local, state, federal and private sectors. Where you are looking to continue your education in graduate or law school, or jump right into the field, places FinnU criminal justice alumni have gone on to include:

  • Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
  • Customs and Border Patrol
  • State Police
  • Department of Child and Family Services
  • Corrections (State and Federal)
  • Law School
  • Graduate School


Listen to Cold Case Homicide Detective Clem Papineau’s story of how his time at Finlandia (formerly Suomi College) prepared him for an illustrious career in the military and the Little Rock police force.

"Dr. Gee has been a mentor since day one. He's kind of been a father figure to me actually. He just provides so much guidance and has helped me out a lot. When I didn't understand something he took me aside and said 'Hey, come talk with me, we'll work this out' on an assignment or just life. It's really cool because you don't get that at a bigger college, where you're kind of on your own. Here it's totally different. The faculty genuinely cares about their students."

Christopher Dennis ('17)

“The system of due process can be lengthy and complicated. It’s my job to understand how to navigate people through that process. I get to hold their hand through some difficult times and say, ‘I understand.’ I help people in a way that most people won’t ever get to. It’s a wonderful opportunity to get to practice law, a wonderful profession and I’m still opening that box.”

Erica Payne ('07)

"I especially love how helpful the professors are here, and the small class sizes, which were similar to my high school. I was originally torn between Criminal Justice and Psychology, but I figured I may have more opportunities with Criminal Justice, but I am minoring in Psychology still. I lived in a small town with a lot of drug problems, so I wanted to go into this field because every town can use the help, and I want to make a difference. "

Shane Voldarski ('22)

The Degree

Progress Sheet

The Classes

Course Descriptions


Students to participate in social justice webinar with Jen Fry Talks on Jan. 19

January 15, 2021

Finlandia University students will begin difficult and necessary discussions on social and racial justice with the Jen Fry Talks virtual event on January 19 from 5:45-7:30 p.m. Social Justice Task Force members Nick Kwiek and Shane Voldarski talked with Finlandia Fridays host, Olivia Myers, this week about the upcoming Jen Fry Talks event and what they hope students will learn.

“We knew we needed an educational component to our campus anti-racist work. We decided […] Read More

Scholarship Spotlight: Shane Voldarski, Criminal Justice Major

December 01, 2020

Shane Voldarski is a criminal justice major at from Ontonagon, Mich. and recipient of the UP Commitment and Finlandia Merit Scholarships. Below is an interview between Voldarski and Amanda Staege about how scholarships have impacted their experience. 

Tell me a little about yourself and your family. Where did you grow up- what was that experience like? 

I am a first generation college student, and grew up in Ontonagon, about 45 minutes away from Finlandia. My childhood wasn’t the easiest, I […] Read More

Marie Bonenfant Moves Back to Financial Aid

October 08, 2020

Photo taken prior to Covid-19 pandemic.

Marie Bonenfant (‘13) recently moved back to the Financial Aid office of Finlandia University as a Financial Aid Counselor.

She worked in the Financial Aid Office previously, then moved over to North Wind Books for a short time, but is now working as a Financial Aid Counselor once again.

Bonenfant grew up in the area and graduated from Finlandia in 2013 with a Bachelors in Psychology with a Criminal Justice […] Read More


  1. Communication: Communicate with clarity and originality using interviewing and interrogation skills to effectively deal with victims and suspects, and when testifying in a court of law.
  2. Analytic and Critical Thinking: Observe, infer, determine relationships, and draw conclusions regarding how laws are written and their impact on the rights of individuals and society.
  3. Creative Insight: Apply investigative techniques, logic, and critical thinking skills to bring a case to its logical conclusion.
  4. Personal Perspective: Function in a multicultural society as a mature, adaptable citizen, while meeting the needs and challenges of clients and communities.
  5. Global Perspective: Create, integrate, and evaluate ideas across a range of disciplines, including sociology, politics, and science, among others.


Fill out the form below and our staff will be in touch with you shortly to help you schedule a visit, start your application process or answer questions!

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Faculty and Staff

Richard Gee

Associate Professor, Criminal Justice


Jason Oyadomari

Associate Professor of Biology & Dean of Suomi College of Arts and Sciences

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