The forensic science major prepares students for a number of exciting careers. First and foremost, the program equips a student to work in a crime lab; with this degree alone a person is well prepared for an entry-level position as a crime lab technician. This is a growing field, and it is expected that jobs will be available for well-prepared candidates. Furthermore, because of the academic rigor of the major, a graduate has a number of other options. They have the necessary training to work in most chemical testing labs, doing things like environmental analysis or quality control. A graduate from this major can go to graduate school, pursuing either an M.S. in forensic science or a Ph.D. in chemistry. Those further degrees could lead to jobs as crime lab directors or university professors. A student could also go to medical school with this degree and train to be a medical examiner. Finally, students with this degree could go straight to a police academy and use their forensic science training as the springboard from which to launch a career as police detective.
Careers in Forensic Science Include:*
- Criminologist: Study physical evidence to link it to suspects
- Digital/Multimedia Scientist: Assist in documenting a crime scene and study digital forensic evidence
- Toxicologist: Determine any substances in a victim’s or suspect’s system (drugs, alcohol, poison, and more)
- Engineering Scientist: Analyze accidents and crime scenes to determine how, when, and why things happened (a car running off the road, a building collapsing, etc.)
- Odontology: Identify remains, usually using dental remains, and assist with determining cause/time of death
- Pathology: Study diseases and assist with determining cause/time of death
- Physical Anthropologist: Study the bones of a victim and assist with determining cause/time or death
- Behavior Scientist: Understand a victim or suspect from a mental health standpoint
- Document Examiner: Answer questions regarding documents, such as whether or not a signature is real and if a document has been altered
*Sample careers obtained from www.forensicsciencedegree.org.
Students in the forensic science program complete an internship at a crime lab. This gives them invaluable practical experience observing and helping real forensic scientists and lets them gain valuable contacts in the field. Most of our students have completed their internship at Ohio’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification (BCI&I).
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