Criminal Justice options multiply for northern Lower Peninsula students at North Central Michigan College

Criminal Justice options multiply for northern Lower Peninsula students at North Central Michigan College

An articulation agreement between North Central Michigan College and Lake Superior State University will allow NCMC students to pursue a criminal justice bachelor’s degree while taking most of their classes in Petoskey.

Classes will be available in fall 2017.

Gretchen Carroll, North Central’s assistant dean of business, manufacturing, and technology, and acting LSSU president David Roland Finley signed the agreement May 5 in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. It is the latest in a series of programs offered through LSSU’s Regional Center in Petoskey.

“This is a great opportunity for northern Lower Peninsula students interested in a career in the various criminal justice fields,” said Finley. “We are pleased to be partnering with North Central to provide more ways for students to achieve their educational goals.”

Carroll said the Petoskey-based college is always looking for new opportunities to expand bachelor and associate’s degree offerings in its service area.

“This new initiative is very positive in that it corresponds to both local and state workforce needs,” Carroll said. “LSSU has been very progressive in working through enhanced programming opportunities. This particular program is terrific because students will have many options in their career paths.”

The new program lets NCMC students apply coursework they earn for an associate in applied science (AAS) degree towards an LSSU bachelor degree in criminal justice-generalist or with concentrations in public safety or law enforcement. Essentially, the first half of a CJ baccalaureate will be done in Petoskey, with the balance being completed at LSSU’s Sault Ste. Marie main campus.

The new agreement also lets NCMC criminal justice students upgrade an AAS into a full associate’s degree by taking an additional 21 LSSU credits – the high-end of one semester – an hour or so up I-75 in the Soo.

Students also have the choice of a certification or non-certification track. If students select certification under the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES), they will spend an additional seven weeks in the skills completion program.

MCOLES training adds practical/hands-on portion of police training, which includes driving, firearms, defense tactics and additional legal education. Students are trained by law enforcement professionals and, when finished, may take the state certification exam. If the students pass all aspects of the program and the state test, they are then eligible to be hired as law enforcement officers in Michigan.

Established in 1973, the criminal justice program at LSSU has always been one of the more popular academic offerings. Besides law enforcement and corrections, CJ degree options include criminalistics, loss control, public safety, and homeland security.

For more information on LSSU’s baccalaureate degree programs available in Petoskey, including accounting, business, criminal justice, general studies, early childhood education and nursing, contact Carolyn Ramsdell at (231) 348-6623 or via email to