Forensic Science Degrees are becoming more and more popular. With the advent of shows like Law and Order and CSI, many people are going to school, hoping to break into the crime scene investigation field. As with any degree program, the hardest decision becomes: Where should I go to school? There are thousands of schools, and it is difficult to decide which college is going to give you the education that you need to be successful in the field of forensics. Here is a list of the top 5 forensics programs in the United States. This list should help to make that decision a little easier.
5. University of California- Davis
UC Davis is a great option for people who are looking for a strong, scientific background. The faculty at UC Davis includes professors from many different departments. Expect to see professors from chemistry, psychology, engineering, medicine, and many other fields. UC Davis is one of the best overall universities in the nation, so many of your professors could be big names in their fields. This is very important when looking for a job after graduate school. As we have all heard it said, “It is all about who you know.” Unfortunately, UC Davis does not offer an undergraduate degree in forensics, though their M.S. is one of the best in the United States. For this reason, UC Davis is number 5 on the list.
4. University of Central Florida
At the University of Central Florida, the name of the game is options. If you are looking to get into forensics, but you are not sure which area you are most interested in, this might be the school for you. Some of UCF’s options include forensic analysis and a biochemistry track on the undergraduate side. For graduates, they offer a certificate in computer forensics and an M.S. in digital forensics. Overall, UCF is a great school for people who are still figuring out what they want to do, and the weather isn’t half bad.
3. University of Mississippi
For those of you who are more interested in laboratory forensics, Mississippi’s degree in forensic chemistry could be just what you are looking for. In this program, you will be trained to analyze and handle samples in a lab with respect to crime scene investigations. This degree is offered by Mississippi’s Chemistry and Biochemistry department, so expect tons of coursework in chemistry, which will give you great prospects when looking for a job after school. The biggest perk to this program is the fact that you will also complete an internship while you are in school. Employers and graduate schools love to see internships on your resume.
2. City University of New York: New York, NY
CUNY is a big school in a big city. If you are looking for a school with urban flare, CUNY is the university for you. It is the largest urban university in the United States and is located in Midtown Manhattan, in the middle of everything. CUNY boasts a program that can prepare students to work in many different settings from laboratories to educational settings to criminal medicine. To make it in this fast-paced program, you will need to take courses in physics, biology, chemistry, and even law. CUNY offers undergraduate students three major options to choose from: molecular biology, toxicology, and criminalistics. If you want a degree that is going to give you a firm foundation in the sciences, CUNY could be the right school for you.
1. Pennsylvania State University
A list of great forensics programs could not be complete without Penn State. At the undergraduate level, students can enroll in a B.S. in forensic science with a focus in either biology or chemistry. These students will learn from some of the top professors in the country and government officials. Penn State also offers students a chance to get real world education through internships, special lectures, and trainings. Forensics students spend their first two years learning hard science and building a strong foundation for their final two years that will consist of forensic sciences and law courses. At Penn State, many students came together and formed a Forensic Science Club. This club is very active on campus. Some of their activities include mock crime scene investigations that will give forensics students great experience and a spooky haunted house that the club puts together every Halloween to raise money. If you are looking for a strong degree and a great learning environment, Penn State is the right university for you.