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Correctional Officer

The primary responsibility of a correctional officer is to monitor, supervise and interact with incarcerated offenders and prepare them to become law-abiding citizens after serving their sentences. You will learn the skills you need to ensure the safety and well-being of inmates, yourself and your colleagues.

Learn how to supervise inmate movement; appropriate use of control tactics, firearms, and other control devices; the principles of human relations, sociology and psychology;  communications techniques, including how to brief visitors and criminal justice professionals entering the institution; extracting inmates from cells and conducting security checks; how to conduct safety equipment checks, and how to draft daily logs and reports. You will receive crisis intervention training and earn a de-escalation certification.

As part of the Corrections Officer program, all cadets undergo on-the-job training at provincial and federal correctional facilities throughout Atlantic Canada. This real-life experience offers students the opportunity to use their skills and knowledge and it plays an integral role in preparing them for a career in corrections.

The program also includes practice on a driving course and gun range, use of force/control skills, as well as communication and mental health training. Academic components include coursework in sociology, psychology, and law.

Students in the Correctional Officer program are required to live in residence for the duration of their training, except when they are in on the job training.


Brittany Rowe, Class of 2016

Brittany Rowe“As a woman, I wanted to know that I could take care of myself in any situation. I’m pretty tough already, so I knew I’d be comfortable doing this kind of work. My on-the-job training was at a correctional facility in my home province, where I hope to get hired. It gave me hands-on experience with inmates, and I got to use all the skills I learned at the Academy. Now I know I’m prepared to take on anything – in my career and in life.”

Annette Guthro, Class of 2016

Annette Guthro“I had just lost a full-time job and had to think about what my next step would be. I knew there would always be criminals, so there would always be a need for correctional officers. I liked that I could learn a whole new career in just 24 weeks. Knowing I can go straight into a job that pays good money and has good benefits is the main reason I chose Holland College. It’s an excellent school, with everything you need. It was the best experience of my life.”

Program Facts

Start: September
Length: 24 weeks
Location: Atlantic Police Academy, Slemon Park, Summerside
Credential: Certificate, Correctional Officer
Minimum passing grade per course:


Admission Requirements

  • Grade 12 or equivalent with credits at or above the general level
  • Must be 19 years of age by program start date
  • Criminal Record Check (Vulnerable Sector) with no findings of guilt.
  • Proof of Canadian citizenship or Canadian permanent resident status
  • Valid Class 5 (cars and light trucks) driver’s license (students holding restricted or graduated licenses must abide by the conditions of the license)
  • Completion of an APA Medical Form
  • Three letters of reference, not from family members
  • Completion of Immunization Verification Form PDF or MS Word. Required after acceptance
  • Certification in Standard First Aid, CPR Level C and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) (must be valid for the duration of the program)
  • Résumé including work and volunteer experience with applicable dates, membership in groups, associations or athletics, awards and distinctions, and any other information about yourself relevant to the program

NOTE: A Child Abuse Registry Search must also be completed in advance for cadets planning to complete their on the job training in Nova Scotia.

View Course Information

Graduate Opportunities

Graduates from this program may find employment with:

  • Federal & provincial correctional facilities

Open Academic Studies program

Feeling like you’re not quite ready for college? Check out the Open Academic Studies program.

Credit Courses

Interested in taking a credit course but don’t want to register for an entire program? Credit courses provide credit toward a diploma or certificate program. Holland College has a variety of options for studying part time during the day, or, in some instances, in the evening or on the weekend.

Tuition & Fees

View a full breakdown of costs for this program.

If you have any questions concerning the Correctional Officer program, contact:

Arlene Heffell



Degree Pathways

Many Holland College programs have degree pathways. For more information, see our Degree Pathways section.

140 Weymouth Street  •  Charlottetown, PE  •  Canada  •  C1A 4Z1  •  info@hollandcollege.com  •  1-800-446-5265