Law enforcement officers and security managers are trained to detect crime and detain criminals. However, some professionals in the field might choose to enroll in a specialized certificate program to learn how to prevent crime before it occurs. In these programs, students learn how to prevent crime through community outreach efforts and education. They also work with retail locations to teach and develop commercial loss prevention skills. Doing this is often a part of the practical experience requirements. Education prerequisites vary by program, but most require a high school diploma or equivalent, and a minimum age of 18.
Some 2-year community colleges offer short crime prevention certificate programs in partnership with organizations such as the National Crime Prevention Council.
Crime Prevention Certificate
Although certificate programs do vary, they usually have four or five courses related to specific types of crime prevention, as well crime prevention and planning theory. Some examples of classes include:
- Introduction to crime prevention
- Crime prevention surveys
- Business crime prevention
- Community crime prevention
- Planning for crime prevention
Popular Career Options
Crime prevention specialist certificate programs are intended for law enforcement officers and security managers. Some positions in the field that might be open to graduates include:
- Security specialist
- Crime prevention officer
- Criminal investigator
- Crime prevention practitioner
- Security consultant
Salary and Career Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), police and detectives are expected to see 5% job growth for the years 2019 through 2029; this growth is as fast as the national average. Sheriff's patrol and police officers earned $65,540 as a median annual wage in 2020.
There is no national certification option available in the field of crime prevention. Each state dictates its own standards for awarding certification to law enforcement officers who have earned training in the field. Some national organizations such as the American Crime Prevention Institute do offer voluntary certification and training seminars for aspiring crime prevention officers and specialists.
Crime prevention certificate programs include classroom lectures and direct-experience opportunities with businesses. Students learn about different approaches to crime prevention and will be eligible for various career roles, such as security personnel and criminal investigators.