What Does it Take to Become a Corrections Officer?

GroupCorrections officers supervise and partake in the custody, security, and treatment of prisoners’ in correctional facilities. Corrections officers attempt to modify prisoners’ attitudes and behavior through one-to-one group interaction and attempt to obtain prisoners’ compliance with facility rules and regulations.  

Classifications: There are two classifications of corrections officers; E8 and E9. Corrections officers E8 are at the entry level. Here, the employee will complete training academy. After successful completion of the academy, the employee is placed on a probationary period at an assigned correctional facility. He/she will oversee and participate in the custody, security, and treatment of prisoners while developing the required skills to perform a range of corrections officer assignments. The second classification is E9 which is the experienced level. In this classification, the employee will be substantially involved in face-to-face contact with the prisoners.

Duties and Responsibilities: Corrections officers E8 will observe prisoners and look for possible usual or prohibited behavior. They will respond to calls for assistance for disturbances and will isolate instigators. Written records and reports are also required. Correction officers E9 will count the prisoners in their jurisdiction several times during the shift. They will conduct thorough searches of prisoners, visitors, employees, mail, packages, and cell blocks for prohibited items. E9 Officers will prevent loitering and uphold prisoners to the rules and regulations. The officer will be responsible for writing Disciplinary Action Tickets for any infractions. The officer will have one-on-one interaction with the prisoners to adjust or modify their behavior. To view the list of all of the duties and responsibilities of corrections officers, go to Michigan.gov.

ManQualifications:
Corrections Officer Duties and Qualifications

Before you can become a corrections officer, you must meet the following requirements. You must have knowledge of basic first-aid procedures, accident prevention, prisoners’ behaviors and problems, standard hygiene, security procedures, and self-defense. You must have the ability to relate to prisoners and gain their respect and confidence, apply departmental policies, successfully complete in-service education and training programs, maintain composure in stressful situations, use various firearms, and communicate effectively.

 Basic entry-level positions require you to complete 15 college credits in one of a combination of one of the following areas: criminal justice, criminology, psychology, social work, sociology, or law enforcement.

 Or, possession of 30 academic credits in any academic degree prerequisite area.

 A bachelor’s degree is required for more advanced level positions. The Department of Corrections will not hire anyone who has been convicted of a felony or has felony charges pending, in accordance with Public Act 140 of 1996. View more information on how to apply to become a corrections officer.

Salary: According to Michigan Civil Service Commission, a Corrections Officer salary can range anywhere from $15.84 – $24.27 and hour depending on experience and classification.

This career path is primarily based on a corrections officer position in the state of Michigan. Criteria for becoming a corrections officer may differ in other states. Please refer to that state’s specific criteria.

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