The Criminology and Criminal Justice Program offers undergraduate and graduate degrees to prepare students for a range of careers in the criminal justice system. Graduates have built successful careers in law enforcement, child protective services, juvenile justice and as lawyers, researchers, teachers and professors.

Our faculty includes leading scholars and criminologists with industry experience who regularly publish in academic journals and have been honored with numerous teaching and academic awards. With a strong focus on research, the program provides opportunities for students to work with faculty on projects ranging from violence prevention in schools to policing to community corrections and white-collar crime. Students also can gain valuable experience through internships and by participating in student organizations. The University’s The Pre-Law Advising and Resource Center helps students prepare for acceptance into law school, with many attending Top 20 schools.

The criminology program was ranked 9th in the nation by College Factual and was ranked No. 1 program in faculty research productivity based on the number of faculty by the Journal of Criminal Justice Education.

Criminology and Criminal Justice Resources

Contact the Criminology and Criminal Justice Program for more information

Erik Milzcik MS’15, PhD’16

Colorado Springs, Colorado
Research and Data Analysis Manager, Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing

What do you do?

I work in the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing, created by the Pennsylvania General Assembly to create and maintain a consistent and rational criminal sentencing policy throughout the Commonwealth. In addition, I have worked in research and statistics for the Arizona Supreme Court and a county prosecutor’s office. Prior to my government work, I worked in corporate security for a Fortune 100 company. Throughout my career I have been using data to analyze crime and criminal justice practices in order to better inform policy decisions.

How do you use your EPPS education in your current profession?

My EPPS education in the Criminology program is the bedrock of my career. I appreciate how the program and faculty provided an education applicable to policy workers as well as academics. The union of theory and policy has been invaluable while conducting government research. I also cannot emphasize enough that quantitative data analysis is the key to government research, making the EPPS Criminology program’s quantitative focus a perfect fit for social science careers.

What value has your EPPS education brought to your life and/or work? 

Practical policy work requires a very flexible mindset, and a broad research expertise. I have worked on cybercrime, workplace violence, open source intelligence, hotspot analysis, crime trends, juvenile justice, operational research, and projection modeling. Since you cannot be an expert in everything, you need to learn how to learn. That is one of the strengths of my UTD education; the faculty gave me the tools to answer nearly any research question.

What advice would you give current and future EPPS students?

Have a plan, but be flexible. Realize there are lots of different jobs out there, many of which will be unknown to you until you have spent time in the field. Some skills, like computer programming, GIS, and statistics can benefit nearly any career.