Do I Need To Take a Foreign Language As a Degree Requirement For Criminal Justice?

A criminal justice degree can be used to gain entry into a variety of fields. If you are interested in criminal justice as a career, do you need to learn a foreign language? The answer to that question is that it depends on what you want to do after you graduate.  There are a lot of division in the Criminal Justice field that would benefit you by speaking multiple languages, however, there are probably just as many who would only require you to speak your native language.  Let’s look at some of the advantages of becoming bi-lingual in the Criminal Justice field.

Learning A Foreign Language Gives You Flexibility

Let’s say you become a police officer in a town that has a large Hispanic population. If you know how to speak Spanish, you can communicate with those who don’t speak English or speak it poorly. If you are doing an investigation into a crime, it is much easier to get the information you need when you can speak the same language that your witness or suspect speaks. While you could still get a job in that town without knowing how to speak Spanish, you would have to have an interpreter with you at all times. That is costly and can take time away from your investigation.

What If You Have To Go Overseas?

There is a chance that you may have to go overseas as part of an operation to stop drug smuggling or infiltrate a foreign crime ring. You need to know how to speak the native language of the country that you are in. Whether it is a popular language like Spanish or a local language only spoken in China, being able to speak that foreign language helps you blend in while you are getting the information that you need.

Build Goodwill By Speaking Multiple Languages

Part of being a police officer or being a part of law enforcement is building goodwill in the community that you serve. By learning how to speak another language, you are showing respect for the culture of the community that you are serving. When the citizens see this, they will accept you as a friend and an ally instead of a foot soldier for a government looking to squash the rights of the people.

Employers Like People Who Can Speak A Foreign Language

Whether you are going into criminal justice or any other career, employers love employees who can speak multiple languages. It is a skill that can give you an edge over your competition. When you are fighting for a job, any extra skills that you can bring to the table enhances your ability to become and stay employed for the long-term.

Although learning another language isn’t necessarily a required skill to start a career in criminal justice, there is no doubt that it helps you get a job. Knowing how to speak a foreign language can help you assimilate into the areas where you will work and build goodwill within that community. It will make your job easier because you will have allies in the community instead of people who will do whatever it takes to make you go away.