Education opportunities for corrections officers - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Education opportunities for corrections officers

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August 24, 2006

Albany -- Albany Technical College and Albany State University are teaming up to provide more educational opportunities for law enforcement students and correctional officers.

The two schools will work with Department of Corrections officers at Lee, Autry, and Calhoun State Prisons, to help them complete degrees.

Department of Corrections Commissioner James Donald says he does not want prison walls to stop education for his employees. Donald says prisons need guards with college degrees to deal with today's inmates. Donald said "They understand things like cognitive rehabilitation, they understand more recognition training."

 Thursday morning Albany Technical College and Albany State University's Presidents signed an agreement to seamlessly accept their criminal justice students course work to educate new law enforcement officers. Albany State University President Dr. Everette Freeman said "That the goal, to keep our best and brightest in Georgia. And use that talent to the best of the citizens of Georgia. "

Albany Tech and Albany State will not only educate tomorrow's law enforcement, they also will send instructors to Southwest Georgia prisons to further the education of current correction officers. Albany Technical College President Dr. Anthony Parker said "I think it's important to bring it to them, so they can get their educational experience, then have time to spend with their families."

 The correction officers will earn bonuses for completing degrees, and becoming the better educated workforce that today's prisons require. Donald said "They are unsung heroes. Now fast forward an opportunity to give them a degree program enhances their ability to be productive citizens in the future. They are going to be with us a long time."

Donald says there are more than one thousand employees of the Department of Corrections in a fifty mile radius of Albany, and the prisons have a budget of 56 million dollars.

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