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Training Issues in Corrections Administration: Interagency Collaboration in Shelby County, Tennessee

NCJ Number
Corrections Compendium Volume: 32 Issue: 5 Dated: September/October 2007 Pages: 1-4,36,39
Wayne J. Pitts; James Coleman
Date Published
September 2007
8 pages
This article examines the lack of adequate training for corrections personnel, specifically for correctional managers, areas in which training is of significant importance to correctional managers, and the innovative, collaborative and cost-effective strategy developed in Shelby County, TN address these concerns in training.
With the evolution in the corrections field and the technological advances in equipment and modernization of facilities, correctional departments are challenged to re-evaluate their training programs, thereby ensuring that staff is well-qualified to address the shifts in the field. Staff training is identified as one of the most powerful problem-solving interventions available to correctional administrators. However, not only must facility administrators be extensively trained, but they also must be responsible for overseeing the management and training of other personnel. In the area of human resource management, correctional administrators must be able to effectively address stress management, personnel needs and recruitment, turnover, job satisfaction, and labor relations. In the area of fiscal responsibility and community relations, administrators must be competent and qualified in areas of finance and business administration. In Shelby County, TN, the Training Advisory Committee was established and sought an innovative, collaborative, and cost-effective strategy to address the many training and other staff needs. A survey developed and administered by the Committee shows that administrators feel they have limited specialized management training and experience. From the results of this survey, a recommendation was made to develop an educational degree program, as well as a certificate program tailored to meet the specific training deficiencies identified in the survey: Certificate Program in Corrections Leadership and Management and Bachelor Professional Studies: Correctional Administration. Both programs are offered through the University of Memphis. Tables, references