Building on Todd Clear’s (2001) recent declaration that academic criminal justice has come of age, this study examines chairs in American criminology and criminal justice programs. By way of survey, chairpersons (n = 78) randomly selected from programs across the United States were questioned in a number of areas related to their positions. The study finds that chairs in these programs are struggling with the same concerns as chairs in other academic disciplines (i.e., competing roles and job‐related stress). As such, while many of them are fairly satisfied with their positions, most of them plan on returning to the faculty once their term is completed. Based on the results of the research, there were two clear implications. First, because of the onerous time demands, young scholars are to be discouraged from taking on significant administrative responsibilities until they have been promoted, tenured, and have achieved some level of accomplishment within the discipline. Second, scholars who are currently chairs and have ambitions of moving through the administrative ranks should be encouraged to do so. As more criminologists progress through the administrative ranks, it is anticipated that the discipline will be viewed and treated more favorably within American universities.
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