Schools in the USA
Back to Career Search     

Prison Guard


Description

There are many types of criminals, from multiple murderers to arsonists to people who cheat on their taxes. Regardless of the severity of the crime, however, anyone in prison is entitled to the protectionist services offered by prison guards, also known as correctional service officers.

These guards work in prisons and other correctional facilities, monitoring people who've been convicted of a criminal offense. They maintain order throughout the prison, and are on duty day and night, holidays and weekends. They watch inmates at work and at play, keep an eye on them during meal times and escort them to trials or on temporary leaves. They also patrol areas, checking doors, windows, and locks. They also do occasional checks of inmates' cells. They keep detailed reports about everything that goes on in the prison, in case they need to defend themselves, a fellow guard, or an inmate in court.

The drawback to this position is the possibility of riot, fire, fights, or escape attempts. Prison guards must therefore always be cautious, and prepared for any emergency. They should be ready to intervene in a dangerous situation--they should be calm, strong individuals who can command respect and obedience from all types on inmates, from mild-mannered first offenders to those trapped by a life of crime.

The positive side can often outweigh the negative, however. Many prison guards get to know inmates, and can assist them in learning new, appropriate behaviors through role modelling. They can make recommendations about offenders to the parole board and have a direct impact on the release of improved inmates, or the continued seclusion of those they consider dangerous. They also work with young offenders, and do what they can to ensure those troubled youths don't grow up to become adult offenders.
 
View Schools for this Career: 
         Related Careers
arrow Air Weapons Control Officer
arrow Ambassador
arrow Artillery Officer
arrow [ view all related careers ]



Program Spotlight
Matching School Ad
Platt College
Turn your talents into a career at nationally recognized and accredited Platt College.
Programs Offered:
  • Criminal Justice

 

 



  Average Earnings  
Entry Level Salary:
$22,010
 
Average Salary:
$32,670
 
Maximum Salary:
$52,370

  Interests and Skills  
Prison guards are mature, reliable people. They have a clean record, are patient, as well as motivated. They have excellent communication skills, and listen and write as well as they talk. They enjoy rising to a challenge, and are physically fit with a lot of stamina. They are leaders, who are non-judgmental and are open to many types of people from many backgrounds. They work well in a team, have good levels of concentration, and are confident in themselves and their abilities.
 

  Typical Tasks  
  • Monitor prisoners in a variety of locations (recreation facilities, dining halls, cell blocks)
  • Observe the conduct and behavior of inmates to prevent disturbances and escapes
  • Prepare discipline reports and case reports
  • Conduct searches of inmates, cells, vehicles and buildings
  • Accompany inmates to courtrooms, hospitals, and work sites
  • Advise National Parole Board on different offenders' behavior
  • The typical day for a prison guard involves a lot of watching, listening, and waiting for an action that requires a reaction from them. They may have to subdue an inmate or transport them from cell to cell, to a courthouse, or to locations within the prison. They write reports about daily actions of inmates and officers. They don't get to travel, unless accompanying a prisoner to trial.

  Workplaces, Employers and Industries  
  • Prison guards work in tough situations. The prisons and correctional institutions where they work can be dangerous. Violent behavior, drug abuse and alcohol consumption can elicit the worst behavior form the inmates, who may be verbally and physically abusive. However, dangerous situations are rare, and most of the time they work in dining halls, outdoor recreation centers, and monitoring cell blocks.
  • They are employed by either the federal or state correctional services. They work in shifts, often at night or on weekends and holidays. They work in a team of other officers and supervisors.

  Long Term Career Potential  
Prison guards can go on to become supervisor, customs officers, police and RCMP officers, and security guards in the private sector. They can become lawyers, human rights activists, and counsellors, social workers, or write about their experiences in books or magazines.
 

  Educational Paths  
In order to work as a prison guard, you need a high school diploma, and some experience working with people in crisis. It would also be a good idea if you got a diploma in correctional services, law and security, or a degree in law, criminology, psychology, or sociology.

You will also need to pass a medical examination, a physical assessment test, have a valid CPR and first aid certificate, and a valid driver's license. Training will be offered to successful applicants.
 

Featured Schools

Matching School Ads
Platt College  Online
Turn your talents into a career at nationally recognized and accredited Platt College.
Programs Offered:
  • Criminal Justice
Campus Locations:
  • Ontario, CA

 
Westwood College  Online

Westwood College is dedicated to preparing students with the knowledge, skills and training needed for meaningful employment. Through education, we create opportunities, change lives and impact futures.

Please call 1-855-816-4009 or fill out the form!

Programs Offered:
  • Criminal Justice (A)
  • Criminal Justice: Major in Administration (B)
Campus Locations:
  • Torrance, CA

 
Walden University  Online
Earn a respected bachelor's degree, master's degree, or Ph.D. online at Walden University.
Programs Offered:
  • PhD in Criminal Justice - Justice Administration-Advanced
  • PhD in Criminal Justice - Public Management and Leadership-Advanced
  • M.S. in Criminal Justice Leadership & Executive Management - Global Leadership
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • , CA

 
Argosy University  Online
Welcome to Argosy University

Argosy University offers doctoral, master's, and bachelor's degree programs to students through its seven colleges: Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, Business, Education, Health Sciences, Undergraduate Studies, The Art Institute of California and Western State College of Law as well as certificate programs in many areas.
Programs Offered:
  • Criminal Justice (BS) (Online)
Campus Locations:
  • Phoenix, AZ

 
Kent State University  Online

Earn your degree anytime, anywhere with Kent State University.

Programs Offered:
  • Master's - Criminology & Criminal Justice - Victimology
  • Master's - Criminology & Criminal Justice - Corrections
  • Master's - Criminology & Criminal Justice - Police
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • Kent, OH

 
DeVry University  Online
Five colleges of study.  One clear focus: Your career success.
Earn the respect of employers with a degree you can earn on campus, online or both.
Programs Offered:
  • Bachelor's - Justice Administration
Campus Locations:
  • Chicago, IL

 
South University, Online Programs  Online

Designed with the needs of working adult students in mind, South University, Online Programs is built on the similar curriculum offered at South University's campus locations. As a student at South University, Online Programs you will receive the same quality instruction, variety of learning options and level of service found at the campus locations.

Programs Offered:
  • Criminal Justice (MS)
Campus Locations:
  • Savannah, GA

 
Carrington College California  Online
Ready for a rewarding career? Start with a certificate or degree from Carrington College California.
Programs Offered:
  • AS in Criminal Justice
Campus Locations:
  • Pleasant Hill, CA

 
Institute of Technology  Online

You can get started on a new career with Institute of Technology.

For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information, please visit our website at www.iot.edu/disclosure

Programs Offered:
  • Criminology and Emergency Response Management
Campus Locations:
  • Clovis, CA

 
Grand Canyon University  Online

Earn your degree online with Grand Canyon University. We offer approximately 100 bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs in a variety of fields that can be completed 100% online.

Programs Offered:
  • B.S. in Justice Studies
Campus Locations:
  • Phoenix, AZ

 
Matching School Ads
  Universities and Colleges
Clarkson UniversityColorado School of MinesDalhousie University
Oral Roberts UniversityPenn State HarrisburgTemple University
The University of HoustonThompson Rivers UniversityUNB Saint John
University of AlabamaUniversity of ArkansasUniversity of British Columbia
University of IowaUniversity of New BrunswickUniversity of Oregon
University of OttawaYork University
Agriculture and Bio-resources | Allied Health and Health Sciences | Applied Business Technology | Architecture
Business Administration | Computer Science | Cosmetology and Esthetics | Culinary, Travel &Hospitality | Dance 
Engineering Technology & Applied Technology |Engineering | Film | Fine Arts and Design | Humanities and Liberal ArtsJustice and Security
Music
| Natural and Applied Sciences | Naturopathic and Holistic MedicineNursingPublic Administration & PolicyReligious and Theological Studies
Sport Sciences and Physical Education | Teacher Education | Theatre
Articles | College News | Videos | Feedback | Career Search
Home | About Us | Contact Us | Faq | Terms of Use | Policy Statement | Site Map | Cities Site Map

Copyright 2003- 2014 QuinStreet, Inc. All Rights Reserved.