Extremely poorly run school that depends heavily on its reputation from its past. Used to cater to public servants seeking higher education, primarily police officers, public administration, fire fighters, etc., it has gotten rid of most of its programs that enabled these public servants for improvement. It is now a less-than-mediocre liberal arts college with a slight focus on criminal justice.
The lower level administrative staff are mostly young, inexperienced and undisciplined, more often seen on facebook or on their phone than actually attending to student needs. Many of them lack the proper training or the knowledge to address problems they are supposed to facilitate, and will often send a student from one office to another... a "referral" that leads to more of the same. Often tasks are resolved by the few individuals who actually do honest work, and I have seen a pattern of returning to these same individuals time and time again when resolving conflicts. If this was a private institution or had proper oversight, I truly believe much of the staff would be outright fired for incompetence.
I've had staff look at me with a straight face and tell me that "We're open from 10 am to 4:45 pm, closed on Fridays and the weekend, and close early on Thursdays", not to mention many of the key staff regularly take days off, or are at "lunch" for hours on end. The staff are a drain on tax payers' money, and are paid to do next to no work or incompetent service at best.
The school focuses on theory over practical applications, so unless you're in the fire and emergency services, or perhaps the forensic science majors, you will not leave here with much that is conducive to an entry level position in many of the public service fields sought by prospective students. However, the aforementioned majors are very good, the fire science in particular, is taught by FDNY chiefs with decades of experience and is very comprehensive.
If you're a veteran or a service member, DO NOT go to this school. I've seen friends of mine who are veterans get terrible treatment when it comes to their benefits. The school has no respect for service members, and gives them a paltry 4 credits in gym for their experiences, while police officers and fire fighters practically get an associates' degree for theirs! The school's explanation was "police officers and fire fighters don't just run around all day shooting guns" - how unprofessional and disrespectful can you be? The school also provides no safeguards or process to help current service members.
The professors in this school varies in quality, I've had some of the greatest teachers in my life here, even if they were grad students. Some of the most difficult classes were the most rewarding, as there are many faculty members in this school from many different backgrounds. On the flip side, you will see some of the worst, incorporating their own opinions as facts to the young impressionable students in their classes. I highly recommend if you do go to school, to look up the professors beforehand, as the hit/miss can be devastating.
Facility-wise, John Jay is lackluster at best. Sitting next to Tenth Ave, and the thin windows and walls, the constant wail of traffic and horns will often bother the class.The community college I attended before coming here was run MUCH more smoothly, and an atmosphere of professional, respectful academia that is absent at John Jay was present. The student body here is wildly undisciplined and the school does little to help it.