The following corrections programs are offered at 2- and 4-year colleges in Florida. The programs may feature several tracks, and they could last from 16 weeks to two years. Participants might be required to complete up to 575 hours of training. Students can either pursue certificates or associate's degrees in several concentrations including correctional officer vocational or correctional officer probation.
Broward College is located in Fort Lauderdale. The Aspen Institute has ranked Broward in the top ten percent of U.S. community colleges. More than 42,000 students enroll in Broward's degree and certificate programs yearly. Students can earn a certificate from the school's correctional officer academy or the correctional probation officer academy. The correctional officer's academy requires students to complete 552 hours. Students take courses in criminal justice, interpersonal skills, and emergency preparedness. The correctional probation officer's academy requires students to complete 465 hours. Students take courses in correctional probation caseload management, correctional probation investigations, and first aid for criminal justice officers.
Florida State College at Jacksonville
Florida State College at Jacksonville has a student population of more than 30,000. The school offers a corrections program through its Military, Public Safety, and Security Division. The program emphasizes interpersonal skills, correctional facility operations, firearms, and defensive tactics. Students can complete the program in about four months.
Hillsborough Community College
Hillsborough Community College is located in Tampa. More than 28,000 students attend the two-year college annually. Students interested in corrections can enroll in Hillsborough's Associate of Science in Criminal Justice Technology program, which includes courses in criminology, corrections, juvenile delinquency, and criminal law in its Corrections, Probation and Juvenile Justice track .
Indian River State College
Indian River State College in Fort Pierce offers more than 150 degrees, certificates, and diplomas. The college was ranked among the top five most affordable colleges in the nation by the U.S. Department of Education. Students who plan on entering the corrections field can enroll in the school's correctional officer basic recruit training program. This program requires students to complete more than 550 hours of training. Students explore criminal justice, correctional operations, defensive tactics, and interpersonal skills. Indian River State College also offers a 199-hour crossover program for law enforcement officers who plan to go into corrections. Graduates of both programs are prepared to take the Florida Department of Law Enforcement State Certification Examination.
Miami Dade College
Miami Dade College is located in the city of Miami. The school serves more than 63,000 students every year. Miami Dade College offers corrections training through its School of Justice. Students can enroll in the Associate of Science in Criminal Justice Technology program with a corrections track to learn about corrections procedures and the criminal justice system as a whole. This includes the causes of criminal activity and ways society addresses them in the courts. Other courses focus on legal procedures, beginning with criminal investigation and leading to arrest, prosecution, and commitment to a corrections facility. The school's correctional officer certificate program requires 436 hours of training. Students examine communications, officer safety, and supervising in a correctional facility.
Palm Beach State College
Palm Beach State College is located in Lake Worth. The school was founded in 1933 and was the first public junior college in Florida. The school offers a corrections certificate program and an associate's degree program. Students in the certificate program complete 420 training hours in courses like correctional intake and release, correctional communications, and supervising in a correctional facility. The two-year degree program offers courses in criminology, forensic science, and police administration.
Seminole State College of Florida
Seminole State College of Florida is a public college in Sanford. More than 18,000 students a year enroll in the school's degree and certificate programs. The correctional recruit basic training program requires students to complete 420 hours of training. Students explore subjects like firearms, officer safety, and supervising special populations. Seminole State College of Florida also offers a crossover training certificate program for law enforcement officers who want to become correctional officers. Both programs are designed to prepare students for the correctional officer state certification exam.
St. Petersburg College
St. Petersburg College is located in the city of Clearwater. The public, 4-year school offers certificates, associate's, and bachelor's degrees. The school offers correctional officer training through its Corrections Academy. The 16-week program provides students with more than 575 hours of training. The program's curriculum is approved by the Florida Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission. The emphasis of the program is on defensive tactics and weapons, emergency preparedness, and correctional operations.
Valencia College is located in Orlando. A correctional officer training program is available through Valencia College's Criminal Justice Institute. This program offers training in investigations, weapons, defensive tactics, and correctional operations. Students also learn about criminal law and ways to administer first aid.
Correctional officers can be found working in prisons, jails, and other types of correctional facilities. Students interested in a career in the corrections field in Florida should seek out certificate or degree programs that will prepare them for the Florida State Certification Exam administered by the state's Department of Law Enforcement. A passing grade on this exam is required before a candidate can work as a correctional officer in the state. Profiled below are the ten largest colleges in Florida that offer education in the area of corrections.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Corrections Degree and Certificate Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2018-2019)*|
|Broward College||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; large suburb|| Correctional Probation Officer Certificate,
Corrections Officer Certificate
|In-state: $2,830, out-of-state: $8,952|
|Florida State College at Jacksonville||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; large city||Basic Correctional Officer Program||In-state: $2,878, out-of-state: $9,992|
|Hillsborough Community College||Two-year, public; large city||Associate of Science in Criminal Justice Technology - Corrections, Probation and Juvenile Justice Track||In-state: $2,506, out-of-state: $9,111|
|Indian River State College||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; large suburb|| Correctional Officer Basic Recruit Training Program,
Correctional Officer Crossover from Law Enforcement Officer Program
|In-state: $2,764, out-of-state: $10,201|
|Miami Dade College||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; large city|| Correctional Officer Career Technical Certificate,
Associate of Science in Criminal Justice Technology - Corrections Track
|In-state: $2,838, out-of-state: $9,661|
|Palm Beach State College||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; large suburb|| Corrections Officer Postsecondary Adult Vocational Certificate,
Associate of Science in Criminal Justice Technology - Law Enforcement Officer Concentration
|In-state: $2,444, out-of-state: $8,732|
|Seminole State College of Florida||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; small city|| Traditional Correctional Basic Recruit Training Vocational Certificate,
Law Enforcement Officer Crossover Training to Florida CMS Correctional Basic Recruit Vocational Certificate
|In-state: $3,131, out-of-state: $11,456|
|St. Petersburg College||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; small city||Corrections Academy Training Program||In-state: $2,682, out-of-state: $9,286|
|Valencia College||Four-year (primarily associate's), public; midsize city||Correctional Officer Training Program||In-state: $2,474, out-of-state: $9,383|
Source: *NCES College Navigator