Campus News

Lethbridge College’s new Bachelor of Criminal Justice program will welcome its first students in September, marking the latest evolution in more than five decades of education in policing- and justice-related fields.

This is the third bachelor degree program available at Lethbridge College, joining Ecosystem Management and Agriculture Science degrees.

A Lethbridge College Justice Studies student talks through a scenario during class.
A Lethbridge College Justice Studies student talks through a scenario during class.

The new degree is a natural fit with the college’s expanding justice, public safety and human services ecosystem, that includes growth in the national award-winning Police Cadet Training program, creation of a new Indigenous Policing micro-credential, and a multitude of applied research projects that are part of the new Centre for Public Safety Applied Research (CPSAR).

Trudi Mason, Dean of the Centre for Justice and Human Services, says the new degree program gives students an outstanding blend of rigorous classroom theory and opportunities for work-integrated learning and applied research projects with a range of industry partners. The new program was created in collaboration with industry partners, emphasizing in-demand skills including critical thinking, conflict resolution, ethical decision-making, inclusivity, communication and leadership.

“We collaborate with more than 50 agencies who serve as program advisers, offer work-integrated learning opportunities or pursue research projects with us,” Mason says. “This collaboration was vital to creating a program that gives students the skills and abilities to thrive in a broad range of justice-related fields.”

The opportunities to be part of applied research projects means students will learn how to collect and analyze data and apply that knowledge for real-world problem solving with an industry partner. Those skills are in demand by employers but also of high value to students interested in continuing their education at the graduate level.

The result is students who complete the Bachelor of Criminal Justice will be poised for employment in a wide range of roles from policing, corrections and border security to fields related to social justice, human services, victim advocacy and more. They’ll also find pathways to continue on to master’s degrees.

The new degree replaces the college’s Justice Studies – Bachelor of Applied Arts, with current students nearing completion of the applied degree having options to complete it as planned or make adjustments to complete the new degree requirements.

Students who complete a Lethbridge College Correctional Studies or Criminal Justice – Policing two-year diploma (or equivalent diploma from another post-secondary) can complete the Bachelor of Criminal Justice with just two more years of study. Students with a diploma or degree in a human service or justice-related field can also apply. The degree program will continue to be delivered both on-campus and online, so students can choose the model that works for them. This flexibility is especially important for those already working in the field.

The first graduates of the new program can expect to cross the stage at Convocation in spring 2025.

“The Bachelor of Criminal Justice degree reflects the hard work, knowledge and vast expertise of our faculty and the voices of our industry partners and alumni who know the challenges and changing needs of agencies in the public sector arena,” says Dr. Samantha Lenci, Lethbridge College Provost and Vice President Academic. “It has been two-and-a-half years in the making, but together we have created something that will be positive for our students and create graduates who will meet industry needs.”

The new degree program is the latest step in Lethbridge College’s more than 50 years of history in policing and justice studies.

Lethbridge College has been offering Criminal Justice education since 1967, and has offered an applied degree in the field for more than 20 years. To enrol in the Bachelor of Criminal Justice and begin taking classes this fall, please visit