Admission Essay: Doctoral Program in Juvenile Justice

Sample Essay

Words 1,180

It has long been my ambition to pursue a doctoral degree in the field of Juvenile Justice, a field with which I have had a great deal of experience in the last several years.  My interest in juvenile justice emerges from a dual career orientation as both a Houston, Texas, police officer and an educator working with students who have encountered difficulties with the law and who require educational services in a highly restrictive environment.  Recognizing that effective service to young individuals who have a record of dysfunctional behaviors that include delinquent actions, educational failure or risk, and other interpersonal emotional, behavioral and psychosocial problems requires a broad education, it is my goal to complete a Ph.D. program in the field of Juvenile Justice.

I have served as a Houston Police Officer for more than seven years.  During this time, I have often been called upon to work directly with younger citizens, many of whom have either been victims of crime or themselves victimizers of others.  In my work, I have encountered young males and females who have turned to a gang for the support and nurturing that they do not receive in their homes or from their families.  I have seen countless young people “experiment” with drugs, alcohol, and crime as a form of rebellion or as a way of gaining some superficial and fleeting satisfaction.  All too often, I have had to arrest young boys and girls and assist the courts in sending these young offenders to a juvenile detention facility.

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