Top 15 Best FBI Colleges in USA to Become an FBI Agent (2023)

To become an FBI agent is a dream and career goal for many, but How To Become An FBI Agent? Well, we are going to discuss that in detail along with that, other useful information about the best colleges for FBI or educational programs that you need to attend to become an FBI agent.

The first and essential requirement for becoming an FBI agent is to have a college degree, different educational institutions are offering academic degrees that might help you become an FBI agent, but a top-rated college will increase your chances of success in this field, it is for this reason that we have brought the best colleges for FBI profiling for you that will include a list of top 15 best colleges in America to become an FBI agent.

I’m sure you must be aware of what is FBI but to recall, the FBI stands for the Federal Bureau of investigation. It is an agency that is primarily responsible for protecting the US homeland from any threat to its existence, boundaries, and people. So, what do FBI agents do to protect their nation or homeland? Well, let’s discuss that.

To begin with, one needs to understand that the Job duties for FBI agent are different from regular employees of the agency, the agents work in the field and perform surveillance to gather information against suspected criminals. Their job is to observe the criminals and gather evidence against them. Once they have gathered the information, they develop the cases against them so that they can be executed and in doing so, the agents also collaborate with the local law enforcement agencies.

The FBI agents do work alone in the field. Instead, the agency provides them with all necessary support in their efforts against the criminals. There are different departments within the federal bureau of investigation such as the technical support department or the IT departments which are the backbones of a field agent, the people working in these departments are directed to extend all the necessary support to the field agents and undercover agents so that their missions can be executed appropriately.

“The agents are a workforce that do forward-facing our investigative missions” said Peter Sursi, an FBI senior executive who oversees the agencies recruiting and hiring process.

Now that we have walked you through the responsibilities of an FBI agent, it is essential to also enlighten you about the efforts that you need to put to become an FBI agent so, without any further due let’s discuss what it takes to become an FBI agent.

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Requirements to become an FBI Agent?

People dream of becoming an FBI Agent, but a heavy burden is put on the shoulders of FBI agents, therefore, before hiring agents, it is ensured by the recruiting department that the person they select must have the muscles to bear the burden of becoming an FBI agent.

There are several pre-employment requirements from the candidates who are willing to become an FBI agent; these requirements are discussed below.

  • The candidate must be a US citizen
  • He/she must be a bachelor’s degree holder. Post-college work experience can be a great plus for the aspiring candidate.
  • The candidate must be able to clear top-secret security clearance. This is to ensure that the candidate will not share the secrets of agency and national security with unauthorized people
  • The candidate must be able to clear to the drug test.
  • The candidate will also have to take a medical certificate from the agency’s chief medical officer. This certificate is to ensure that the candidate is in a position to withstand the challenging physical routine during the job.

We have discussed the requirements that you need to clear to become an FBI agent, let’s now Jump to the job responsibilities of an FBI agent so that you can better understand the demands of the career path that you are going to choose for yourself.

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(Video) Top 15 Best FBI Colleges in America to Become an FBI Agent

Job Responsibilities Of An FBI Agent

The Job of FBI agents is demanding; the agents will have to give up on their regular routines to become an FBI agent. You wonder what does this mean, well, you will not have a definite work schedule and you can expect to work in irregular hours. In other words, the agents will have to surrender some control of their lives to the agencies, and the aspiring candidates must be Okay with that.

Persistence is another crucial factor when it comes to becoming an FBI Agent; the aspiring candidate must be willing to dig in more and more in search of information. The agents stationed at the remote stations will have to face more challenging tasks as compared to the agents who are stationed in metropolitan cities. The natures of investigations also vary depending on the stations of FBI Agents.

One thing that aspires many people to join the FBI is the variations is the Job nature of the FBI agents, for example, your one posting might be very peaceful in which you have to go through documents and proofread them. In contrast, the other posting might demand you to deal with hardcore criminals. This diversity like job compels many young students to join the FBI as an agent.

But how do you become one? First of all, you need to be good at your studies so that you can get a college degree from a reputed institution. Once you have acquired academic knowledge, you can apply for any of the announced posts and get selected as an FBI agent but fulfilling all the requirements.

Now we have come to the section for which I’m sure you must have waited, the top 15 best colleges to become an FBI Agent.

In this section, we shall explore the best FBI colleges in us. Getting a degree from these colleges will not only give you immense knowledge, but it will also increase the chances of your employment at the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

So without any further due, here is our complete list of the top 15 best colleges to become an FBI Agent

Related: Best Degree Paths For Becoming An Fbi Agent Complete Career Guide

Top 15 Best Colleges To Become An FBI Agent

Each of these institutions has a long history of training successful FBI agents. They offer rigorous coursework and hands-on experience that is sure to prepare students for a career in federal law enforcement. In addition, they have close ties to the FBI itself, which can help students get ahead when it comes time to apply for jobs. If you’re interested in becoming an FBI agent, be sure to check out one of these schools!

Sr. No

Name of the Institution


1Arizona State UniversityPheonix AZ
2University of Michigan- DearbornDearborn, MI
3California State UniversityLong Bean, CA
4Indiana UniversityBloomington, IN
5University of GeorgiaAthens, GA
6Heritage UniversityToppenish, WA
7Purdue UniversityIndianapolis, IN
8Truman State UniversityKirksville, MO
9California State University – Los AngelesLos Angeles, CA
10Holy Family UniversityPhiladelphia, PA
11American UniversityMassachusetts, Washington DC
12CUNY John Jay College of Criminal JusticeNew York City
13George Mason UniversityFairfax, VA
14Northeastern UniversityBoston, MA
15Michigan State UniversityMichigan

Now that we have given you the list of top 15 best colleges to become an FBI Agent, let’s explore the universities one by one and see what makes them the best colleges for FBI agents.

  • Arizona State University

The university offers a bachelor’s and master’s degree in criminology and criminal justice, which will help you learn the subject matter related to an FBI agent’s job. The University criminal justice and criminology program is considered a leading Higher education program in the United States.

The state of the art infrastructure of the university and qualified faculty makes the program more impressive. It is for this reason that the university got was ranked in 5th position across the United States by U.S. News and World Report

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  • University of Michigan- Dearborn

The University of Michigan has a state of the art infrastructure that provides the ultimate learning environment to criminal justice students. The university’s College of Arts, science, and letters has nationally recognized faculty members due to which it is considered good colleges for FBI agents.

  • California State University

California State University has a School of Criminal Justice and Criminalistics, which is considered among the best schools for FBI agents. Many of the school graduates have succeeded in securing a good position at various law enforcement agencies. The university has students from diverse backgrounds, which exposes you to different cultural diversities.

  • Indiana University

Indiana University’s department of criminal justice is based on two fundamental principles, Innovation and relevance. The innovative techniques used to inculcate knowledge into the students have proved to be much efficient for the students’ learning.

The second principle is relevance, which means that the relevant knowledge of criminal justice is being given to the students, making them prepared for the market. It is for this reason that Indiana University is among the top FBI colleges.

  • University of Georgia

The criminal justice program at the university of Georgia provides interdisciplinary academic course work to the students. The course includes critical theoretical aspects and research techniques, which have proved beneficial for the students.

Not just the theory, the students are also taught about various practical aspects of the criminal justice field. During the degree program, students are appointed on different internships due to which the university is considered among the best FBI universities

  • Heritage University

The Heritage University is famous for its criminal justice program. The program aims to teach the career-oriented students to develop critical thinking, effective communication, and work ethics in their personalities.

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The program doesn’t only teach knowledge but also prepares the students for the job market requirements. Among the college for FBI agents, the students of heritage university have proven themselves in various field jobs of criminal justice.

  • Purdue University

Among the universities for FBI agents, Purdue University ranks on 7th number. The criminal justice program of the university emphasizes teaching the legal aspects of criminal justice to the students. Having a firm grip on legal matters makes the students more resilient when performing the job’s responsibilities.

  • Truman State University

Truman State University’s The School of social and cultural studies offers a criminal justice degree. The school is considered among the best FBI schools, and the graduates from the school have acquired a leadership role in various criminal justice organizations.

  • California State University – Los Angeles

The California State University:Los Angeles holds 9th position in our list. The Faculty members of the university and the state of the campus’s art infrastructure have been compelling many students to graduate from the institution.

Many students have graduated from the university and scored the right positions within the criminal justice system.

  • Holy Family University

The criminal justice program is one of the popular programs at Holy Family University. It provides students with academic knowledge in criminal justice and practical training in the fieldwork. The university offers two different programs, which include a master’s program and a bachelor’s degree.

The university is ranked among the top universities for becoming an FBI agent because of the knowledge they teach to the students.

  • American University

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The American university is located in Washington, DC, just a few steps away from the power corridors. The American homeland security department is just a few steps away from the university. The prime location compels the students to land at these offices; therefore, they strive to attain any of the positions.

For this reason, many of the university graduates have got employed at different offices in Washington DC.

  • CUNY John Jay College of Criminal Justice

A university is known for its graduates. Many of the John Jay College alumni have suggested the aspiring candidates for becoming an FBI agent to consider the university for their higher studies. When asked why they said the university’s supporting staff and the faculty members are the main reason because they recommend this university.

  • George Mason University

The students of George Mason University acquire knowledge related to criminology in their bachelor’s degree. When supported by practical experience from the internships, it becomes much productive for carrying the field jobs. It is, for this reason, the degree of George Mason University is much valued.

  • Northeastern University

The northeastern university prepares the students for both professional and research careers so that their knowledge can contribute to the country’s policy-making. The graduates from the university have scored the right positions in various criminal justice organizations.

  • Michigan State University

Michigan University aims at preparing the students for taking the leadership role so their social problems can be addressed by those who are well equipped with knowledge. The graduates of Michigan state university have acquired many of the leadership roles in different departments.

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What is the best degree to become an FBI agent? ›

1. Criminal Justice. When it comes to those working at the FBI, the most common degree is a bachelor's in criminal justice. This degree gives you an overview of the tasks you will complete and how to do them.

Can you become an FBI agent right out of college? ›

For the special agent process, we require a college degree, but also a minimum of three years of continuous work experience before being able to apply to the FBI. There are caveats to that. If you obtain an advanced degree, you can lower the number of continuous work experience years from three down to two.

Which subject is best for FBI? ›

Science (chemistry, physics and biology)

Science degrees or even STEM courses in themselves will provide a variety of potential opportunities for those working with the FBI agent or any government entities. Having a strong background in chemistry, physics, and biology is a good start.

How many years of college does it take to be a FBI agent? ›

How long does it take to become an FBI agent? It's a long process to become an FBI agent—generally at least six or seven years. First you need at least a bachelor's degree, which typically takes four years of full-time study. You will also need at least two years of full-time professional work experience.

What do FBI agents study in college? ›

All FBI agents must hold a bachelor's degree at minimum, and many possess a master's degree or higher. FBI agents often earn degrees in fields such as criminal justice or political science, though the Bureau does not maintain any specific academic major requirements for applicants.

How hard is it to join the FBI? ›

The FBI accepts fewer than 20% of applicants, making jobs within the bureau highly competitive. Applicants typically begin their candidacy through one of the FBI's various entry programs, all of which are tailored to specific FBI career tracks.

How old is the youngest FBI agent? ›

You must be at least 23 years old at the time of your appointment. You must also be younger than 37, unless you qualify for an age waiver available to veterans.

Do you get paid while in FBI Academy? ›

Salary and Compensation: New Special Agents, called New Agent Trainees or NATs, are paid on the GL schedule for Federal Law Enforcement Officers (LEO), beginning as a GL-10, step 1, while in training at Quantico.

What do FBI agents wear? ›

The FBI's spokespeople ensure that agents dress appropriately and work properly. It makes no mention that each agent must wear the traditional black suit and white shirt. Being an FBI agent is a role to be proud of whatever you wear or where you are, as you labor day and night to protect the public and the nation.

What skills do you need to be a FBI agent? ›

For the special agent position, they include leadership, collaboration, organizing and planning, problem-solving/judgment, flexibility/adaptability, initiative and communication. The competencies serve as indicators that demonstrate that you have the skills to do the job.

Are all FBI agents lawyers? ›

You do not have to be a lawyer or have a law degree to become an FBI special agent. The bureau does recruit lawyers as special agents and it uses attorneys and other legal professionals in a variety of other roles.

What do u need to be a FBI agent? ›

To be eligible for employment, you must adhere to the following guidelines prior to application consideration:
  • Be a U.S. citizen.
  • Public record must be in good standing with no felony convictions.
  • Adherence with FBI drug policy.
  • Pass urinalysis and background investigation.
  • Student loan repayments must be in good standing.

How many hours do FBI agents work? ›

FBI Special Agents have physically and mentally challenging careers where they may be posted to different domestic field offices or overseas locations. Travel is often required, and agents are expected to work a minimum of 50 hours per week, on call for the job 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Who is higher DEA or FBI? ›

Employee Ratings. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) scored higher in 6 areas: Culture & Values, Work-life balance, Career Opportunities, CEO Approval, Recommend to a friend and Positive Business Outlook.

Are FBI agents allowed to tell family? ›

No. Such information is protected from public disclosure, in accordance with current law and Department of Justice and FBI policy.

Does the FBI offer scholarships? ›

Each year, the FBI-LEEDA scholarship program offers five $1,000 scholarships. The scholarships are awarded at the Annual Executive Education Conference. The guidelines for eligibility are listed below. The FBI-LEEDA Scholarship Program is now accepting applications for the 2022 - 2023 academic year.

How do you join the FBI after college? ›

Assuming you are already a college graduate and physically fit, you must get through the following steps to become an FBI agent:
  1. Begin the application process. ...
  2. Pass phase one and two testing. ...
  3. Pass the physical fitness test (PFT). ...
  4. Receive a conditional appointment offer. ...
  5. Pass a background check.

Is working for the FBI worth it? ›

Pros of being an FBI agent

FBI agents typically earn a decent salary and receive a good benefits package. The average salary for a special agent is $71,665 per year . In addition, special agents receive health insurance, long-term care coverage, group life insurance, retirement savings and investment plans.

Can FBI agents get married? ›

While the FBI marriage rules do not prohibit FBI agents from marring foreign nationals, it may affect their security clearance eligibility, preventing agents from performing specific responsibilities.

Do FBI agents like their jobs? ›

And while agents do encounter dangerous situations, the media portrayals of working for the FBI usually blow this part of the job out of proportion. According to NBC News, FBI agents reported increases in job satisfaction in 2019, showing how people with the right personality type really enjoy the work.

What does the FBI look for when hiring? ›

Applicants must be able to pass a polygraph exam, drug screen, and background investigation, and be able to receive a Top Secret security clearance. For a complete list of qualifications, visit Selected candidates will be interviewed.

Do most FBI agents have law degrees? ›

You do not have to be a lawyer or have a law degree to become an FBI special agent. The bureau does recruit lawyers as special agents and it uses attorneys and other legal professionals in a variety of other roles.

Is criminology a good major for FBI? ›

Applicants with degrees in criminology, criminal justice or psychology will certainly have an advantage with law enforcement expertise, but they may have a tougher time getting selected for Special Agent positions than candidates with specialized skill sets.

What degree is best for CIA? ›

Like other big organizations, the CIA needs people with degrees in business administration, accounting and finance. A degree in international business, which prepares graduates to deal with different cultures and engage in foreign business practices, is a good fit for the CIA.

What degree do you need to be a CIA agent? ›

All CIA positions require a bachelor's degree, but some may prefer or require a master's or doctorate degree. Another variable is experience: Most CIA jobs want at least at least one year of prior experience, but some require three to five years.

What subjects are needed to become a FBI agent? ›

Degrees for FBI Agents
  • computer science.
  • criminal justice.
  • criminology.
  • foreign language.
  • forensic accounting.
5 Apr 2022

How do you get into the FBI Academy? ›

Eligibility Requirements
  1. Be between 23 and 36 years of age.
  2. Hold a bachelor's degree.
  3. Have two years of full-time work experience, or one year plus a master's degree.
  4. Meet the special agent physical fitness requirements. ...
  5. Have a valid driver's license and at least six months of driving experience.
15 Jun 2021

How do you join the FBI after college? ›

Assuming you are already a college graduate and physically fit, you must get through the following steps to become an FBI agent:
  1. Begin the application process. ...
  2. Pass phase one and two testing. ...
  3. Pass the physical fitness test (PFT). ...
  4. Receive a conditional appointment offer. ...
  5. Pass a background check.

What looks good on an FBI resume? ›

For the special agent position, they include leadership, collaboration, organizing and planning, problem-solving/judgment, flexibility/adaptability, initiative and communication. The competencies serve as indicators that demonstrate that you have the skills to do the job.

Do you have to be a cop before FBI? ›

Yes. You can become an FBI agent if you have no prior law enforcement experience. One path to becoming a federal agent is through a four-year degree in one of the appropriate fields relating to the job being applied for and three years of relevant work experience.

What type of FBI agents are there? ›

The FBI has a wide variety of career opportunities for individuals from all backgrounds and experiences. Our professional staff employees serve as intelligence analysts, financial experts, scientists, security specialists, linguists, and more.

What is the age limit to join the CIA? ›

You Must Be a U.S. Citizen and at Least 18 Years of Age

We do not help individuals apply for U.S. citizenship. Also, you must be at least 18 years of age to qualify for a job at CIA.

Is there a CIA academy? ›

CIA University (CIAU) is the primary education facility of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Founded in 2002 and located in Chantilly, Virginia, the school holds courses on various intelligence-related subjects, ranging from chemical weapons manufacturing to foreign languages.

What is CIA college? ›

The internal system in Christ University is called CIA (Continuous Internal Assessment). It plays an integral role in a student's overall performance in that particular semester. The CIA 1 and 3 are conducted by subject teachers in their own formats and rules, thus leaving no space for a standard rule.

What is the course of secret agent? ›

Secret Service training usually takes several months. Agents complete the 10-week criminal investigator training program, followed by an 18-week special agent training course. Agents also undergo continuing education and training throughout their careers.

Will the CIA pay for college? ›

Tuition assistance up to $18,000 per calendar year for tuition, mandatory fees and books; STEM field positions receive tuition up to $25,000 per calendar year. Daily allowance for meals and incidentals during summer tours. Reimbursement for transportation costs between school and Washington, DC. Annual salary.

What skills does the CIA look for? ›

Special agents/investigators must possess:
  • An in-depth knowledge of administrative investigative techniques and procedures.
  • The ability to bring together and organize large amounts of data.
  • The ability to draw appropriate conclusions.
  • The ability to work alone or as part of a team.
  • The ability to work under pressure.


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