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SECURITY GUARD CAREER PATH

Security guards, sometimes also referred to as security officers, work for private organizations helping enforce property rules while deterring criminal activity. Those who work in the security guard career path can be found in a variety of settings — including office buildings/complexes, hotels, casinos, retail stores, malls and other public spaces.

WHAT KIND OF EDUCATION AND TRAINING DO SECURITY GUARDS NEED?

The requirements to work in the security guard career path vary from employer to employer. In some cases, it is possible to find employment with a high school diploma. Businesses with security guard college degree prerequisites often prefer candidates who studied criminal justice or a related field, as graduates of such programs have learned fundamental concepts that can make them better at their jobs.

Most employers provide on-the-job training for newly hired security guards, including expectations for dealing with emergencies or unusual situations, and using company-provided technology solutions. 

WHAT IS TYPICALLY INCLUDED IN A SECURITY OFFICER JOB DESCRIPTION?

The security officer job description may involve working at a desk reviewing video surveillance, patrolling the employing company’s property, or a combination of the two. 

Security officer duties typically include some or all of the following tasks:

  • Enforcing the employing company’s rules on company premises
  • Monitoring surveillance systems
  • Responding to alarms
  • Patrolling the property and addressing security or safety issues promptly
  • Controlling access to the property
  • Verifying the security of the property
  • Assisting customers/patrons as needed
  • Creating reports of incidents and observations 

WHAT ARE THE POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF BECOMING A SECURITY GUARD?

The security officer job description provides for a variety of responsibilities, which is a draw for many people. While there is a perception that the role could be mundane, security guards must be attentive at all times. This role could be the right choice if you want to protect and serve in a private capacity, rather than working as a public servant.

The national median security guard salary in the U.S. as of May 2019 was $29,680. The annual mean wage in Illinois for the same time period was slightly higher at $33,800. Keep in mind, pay can — and does — vary from employer to employer. 

EARN A CRIMINAL JUSTICE DEGREE TO JUMPSTART YOUR SECURITY GUARD CAREER

For those interested in pursuing the security guard career path, earning a college degree in criminal justice can improve the chance of obtaining coveted roles and of moving up to supervisory positions.

MacCormac College’s criminal justice degree program prepares graduates to handle security officer duties with confidence.

Courses cover the following:

  • Constitutional, criminal and procedural law
  • Ethical pitfalls
  • Evidentiary standards
  • Criminal justice theory
  • Criminal justice system infrastructure
  • Much more

This accredited associate degree is offered in-person on our campus in the heart of Chicago, as well as in a convenient online format that makes it easier for busy adults to meet their educational goals while managing other responsibilities.

If you are ready to take the next step toward a future career as a security guard, apply online for program admission today. Still have questions about the program? Please contact us for more information.