Handcuffs and finger prints

About the Criminal Justice Master of Science

If you are intrigued not only with law enforcement, but also with forensics, police organization and management, and crime theory, Buffalo State College’s Criminal Justice Master’s Program may be the perfect fit for you.

Criminal justice graduate students study the organizational behavior and management, correctional strategies, and the administration of justice. They are prepared for promotions with police departments, as well as for positions with federal agencies, cybersecurity firms, and state organizations.

Criminal Justice, M.S.

Degree Information

A master of science degree in criminal justice opens the door to a variety of careers that are usually exciting and occasionally even dangerous. All make a difference to society. The job outlook is also bright.

Employment of police detectives is projected to grow 5 percent from 2018 to 2028, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and those jobs report a median income of $63,380 per year. If you’re interested in becoming a corrections office or a paralegal, both positions are expected to increase 18 percent by 2028. 

However, there are numerous careers that can be pursued with a criminal justice degree—and a master’s degree gives you even more options:

  • Alcohol/Tobacco/Firearms Agent
  • CIA Agent
  • Coast Guard Officer
  • Compliance Officer
  • Computer Forensics Specialist
  • Court Clerk/Reporter
  • Crime Scene Investigator
  • Criminologist
  • Customs Agent 
  • Cybersecurity Specialist


  • Drug Enforcement Agent
  • FBI Agent 
  • Forensic Psychologist
  • Homeland Security Agent 
  • Immigration and Naturalization Agent 
  • Law Enforcement Officer/Sheriff 
  • Private Investigator
  • Private Security Guard
  • Probation Officer
  • Social Services

Buffalo State is committed to providing program-related experiences that will enhance students’ personal and professional growth. Below are just a few clubs and opportunities available to criminal justice majors.

Criminal Justice Club: This club aims to educate all Buffalo State students on crime and safety, as well as encourage principles of self-awareness, unity, determination, and responsibility. 

National Criminal Justice Honor Society: Alpha Phi Sigma Honor Society, the national honor society for criminal justice majors, recognizes the academic excellence of undergraduate and graduate criminal justice students. 

University Police Student Assistant (UPSA) program: This program enables students to experience the work environment and learn about its expectations and responsibilities. Among other work assignments, student assistants on the Buffalo State campus provide escort services to campus community members or visitors, monitor traffic, oversee social, cultural, and sporting events, and operate the Safe Escort and Motorist Assistant Program vans. Buffalo State’s University Police Department hires more than 60 student assistants each semester. 

Internship experiences students have recently enjoyed including: 

  • Amherst Police Department
  • Buffalo Police Department 
  • Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives
  • Cheektowaga Police Department
  • Drug Enforcement Administration 
  • Erie County Analysis Center
  • Erie County Sheriff’s Department
  • Homeland Security Investigations (ICE) 
  • Niagara County Sheriff’s Department --- Crime Analysis 
  • U.S. Marshals

Long Legacy

Buffalo State’s criminal justice program is the oldest such program in Western New York and its reputation extends across the state.

Experienced Faculty

Our well-qualified, nationally known faculty members are trained in a variety of policy-oriented disciplines.

Real-World Experience

At the graduate level, criminal justice students do an independent study and a master’s project or research project to gain real-world experience. 

Local Career Opportunities

Our recent graduates have been hired by the Buffalo Police Department, the Erie County Sheriff's Department, the Erie County Probation Department, the New York State Police, U.S. Customs and Immigration, and Erie County Victim Services.