The Georgia State Department of Corrections groups all the states county and private prisons; transitional facilities, detention centers; parole and county jails under their jurisdiction. This includes the state's 26 state prisons such as Arrendale State Prison, Central State Prison, and Jimmy Autry State Prison, as well as federal facilities like the Federal Correctional Institutions at Jesup and Atlanta. Altogether, there are 13,004 correctional officers in the state of Georgia and the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that this number will increase by a steady 5% to 13,654 by 2022. Not included in this tally are significant factors such as jobs opening due to retirement, attrition, and promotion. The median salary for a front line corrections officer in the state is approximately $31,108 - opportunities for growth and advancement are plentiful for willing candidates. Interested in reading more about the corrections industry and where you might fit in? Read on for more information.
Top Schools Supporting Careers in Criminal Justice & Corrections
The following rankings are based on student data, published surveys, and other school and career data collected from several sources which include the following government agencies:
- National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)
- The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS)
By obtaining our base data set from the above data sources, schools were ranked using the criteria below:
- Schools with less than 10 total graduates per year were omitted in order to maintain statistical integrity
- Schools must have at least 1 graduate in the field of criminal justice
- Only 4-year, 2-year, and technical public and private non-profit schools were included
Schools were sorted in order of the highest percentage of total students graduating with a degree in the field of criminal justice (CIPCODES: 43.0102, 43.0110, 43.0113, 43.0103, 43.0104, 43.0107, 43.0109, 43.0111, 43.0112, 43.0199).
Thomas University ranks first in our latest rankings with forty-two students graduating from programs in law enforcement administration out of a total 546 graduates.
Columbus State University
Columbus State University ranks second in our rankings with 220 students graduating from programs in criminal justice out of a total three thousand graduates in the 2012-2013 school year.
Albany State University
Albany State University ranks third in our latest rankings with 91 students graduating from programs in corrections and criminal justice out of a total a thousand graduates.
Southeastern Technical College
Southeastern Technical College ranks 4th in our latest rankings with 113 students graduating from programs in criminal justice out of a total a thousand students.
South Georgia Technical College
South Georgia Technical College ranks fifth in our latest rankings with 124 students completing programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total 2,412 graduates from the 2012-2013 school year.
Fort Valley State University
Fort Valley State University ranks 6th in our rankings with 58 students completing programs in criminal justice out of a total a thousand graduates from the 2012-2013 school year.
Albany Technical College
Albany Technical College ranks seventh in our latest rankings with 225 students graduating from programs in criminal justice and security and loss prevention services out of a total 4,562 students from the 2012-2013 school year.
Athens Technical College
Athens Technical College ranks eighth in our rankings with 163 students graduating from programs in criminal justice out of a total three thousand students from the 2012-2013 school year.
Georgia Military College
Georgia Military College-Distance Learning Campuses ranks ninth in our latest rankings with 102 students graduating from programs in law enforcement administration out of a total 2,418 graduates.
Southern Crescent Technical College
Southern Crescent Technical College ranks 10th in our latest rankings with 108 students completing programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total 2,784 graduates in the 2012-2013 school year.
Wiregrass Georgia Technical College
Wiregrass Georgia Technical College ranks 11th in our rankings with ninety-two students completing programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total 2,440 students from the 2012-2013 school year.
Georgia Northwestern Technical College
Georgia Northwestern Technical College ranks 12th in our latest rankings with 148 students graduating from programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total four thousand students from the 2012-2013 school year.
Augusta Technical College
Augusta Technical College ranks 13th in our rankings with 93 students completing programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total two thousand graduates in the 2012-2013 school year.
Savannah State University
Savannah State University ranks fourteenth in our latest rankings with 31 students graduating from programs in corrections out of a total 928 graduates from the 2012-2013 school year.
Georgia Piedmont Technical College
Georgia Piedmont Technical College ranks 15th in our latest rankings with ninety-seven students completing programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total 2,928 students from the 2012-2013 school year.
Clark Atlanta University
Clark Atlanta University ranks sixteenth in our rankings with thirty-nine students graduating from programs in criminal justice out of a total a thousand students in the 2012-2013 school year.
Columbus Technical College
Columbus Technical College ranks 17th in our rankings with 63 students graduating from programs in criminal justice out of a total two thousand students in the 2012-2013 school year.
Coastal Pines Technical College
Coastal Pines Technical College ranks eighteenth in our rankings with 39 students graduating from programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total 1,564 graduates from the 2012-2013 school year.
Ogeechee Technical College
Ogeechee Technical College ranks nineteenth in our rankings with fifty-eight students completing programs in criminal justice and criminal justice out of a total 2,420 graduates.
Valdosta State University
Valdosta State University ranks 20th in our latest rankings with 116 students completing programs in criminal justice out of a total five thousand graduates from the 2012-2013 school year.
Continued List of All Criminal Jusitice Programs in Georgia
West Georgia Technical College
176 Murphy Campus Blvd., Waco, GA 30182
Phone: (770) 537-6000
Lanier Technical College
2990 Landrum Education Dr, Oakwood, GA 30566
Phone: (770) 531-6300
Bainbridge State College
2500 E Shotwell St, Bainbridge, GA 39819
Phone: (866) 825-1715
Georgia College and State University
231 W Hancock Street, Milledgeville, GA 31061
Phone: (478) 445-2770
University of North Georgia
82 College Circle, Dahlonega, GA 30597
Phone: (706) 864-1400
Chattahoochee Technical College
980 S Cobb Drive Dr SE, Marietta, GA 30060
Phone: (770) 975-4064
Southern Regional Technical College
800 Veterans Parkway North, Moultrie, GA 31788
Phone: (229) 891-7000
Dalton State College
650 College Drive, Dalton, GA 30720-3797
Phone: (706) 272-4436
Clayton State University
2000 Clayton State Boulevard, Morrow, GA 30260-0285
Phone: (678) 466-4000
Armstrong State University
11935 Abercorn St, Savannah, GA 31419-1997
Phone: (912) 344-2806
Central Georgia Technical College
80 Cohen Walker Drive, Warner Robins, GA 31088
Phone: (478) 757-3400
Kennesaw State University
1000 Chastain Rd, Kennesaw, GA 30144-5591
Phone: (770) 423-6000
Georgia Gwinnett College
1000 University Center Lane, Lawrenceville, GA 30043
Phone: (678) 407-5000
Oconee Fall Line Technical College
1189 Deepstep Rd, Sandersville, GA 31082
Phone: (478) 553-2050
Gwinnett Technical College
5150 Sugarloaf Parkway, Lawrenceville, GA 30043-5702
Phone: (770) 962-7580
1400 Coleman Avenue, Macon, GA 31207
Phone: (478) 301-2700
501College St, Cuthbert, GA 39840-5550
Phone: (229) 732-2171
North Georgia Technical College
1500 Georgia Hwy 197 N, Clarkesville, GA 30523
Phone: (706) 754-7700
Savannah Technical College
5717 White Bluff Rd, Savannah, GA 31405-5594
Phone: (912) 443-5700
Georgia Southern University
Brannen Hall, 2670 Southern Drive, Statesboro, GA 30460-8126
Phone: (912) 478-5391
Georgia Regents University
1120 Fifteenth St, Augusta, GA 30912
Phone: (706) 721-0211
Georgia State University
33 gilmer st, Atlanta, GA 30303-3083
Phone: (404) 413-2000
165 Central Ave, Demorest, GA 30535-0010
Phone: (706) 778-3000
University of Georgia
Administration Building, Athens, GA 30602
Phone: (706) 542-3000
830 Westview Dr SW, Atlanta, GA 30314
Phone: (404) 681-2800
Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College
2802 Moore Hwy, Tifton, GA 31793-2601
Phone: (229) 391-5001
315 Shorter Ave, Rome, GA 30165
Phone: (706) 291-2121
Georgia Highlands College
3175 Cedartown Highway, S.E., Rome, GA 30161-3897
Phone: (800) 332-2406
Middle Georgia State College
100 College Station Drive, Macon, GA 31206
Phone: (478) 471-2700
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Georgia Correctional Officer Certification Requirements
The Georgia Department of Corrections actively solicits applications for corrections officer only when there are job vacancies to fill at the county, state, or federal level. With this in mind, it is important that applicants are prepared to meet the state's eligibility requirements and assessments in a timely fashion. In addition to a completed application, candidates must show initial eligibility by providing the following:
- Be 18 years of age or more
- Have earned a high school diploma or equivalent
- Be a U.S. citizen
- Have no felony convictions
Upon meeting the eligibility requirements, candidates must then engage in standardized testing in order to determine their aptitude for the job. This testing, known as the POST Entrance Exam, consists of the following:
- Written or online test
- Physical assessment
- Fitness testing
The Department of Corrections reserves the right to test applicants for drug use, and background and character checks as it deems appropriate. Finally, applicants who meet all the academic and physical requirements will be scheduled for additional training at a state Department of Corrections facility in order to complete hands-on training that is key to success on the job. Candidates who are not successful in this endeavor will not be hired for the position of corrections officer.
Georgia Department of Corrections
300 Patrol Road
Forsyth, GA 31029
Phone: (888) 343-5627
Georgia Correctional Officer Employment & Outlook
Correctional Officer Salary: Georgia vs National Salary Comparison
Source: BLS State Cross-Industry Estimates 2011
The state Department of Corrections in Georgia encourages stability in the field of corrections by supporting careers in state service, namely as front-line correctional officers. At this time, the median income for correctional officers throughout Georgia is lower at $28,000 than the national median income at $39,800, however, professional development for existing officers helps remediate the lower starting salary. and according to occupational data for the state of Georgia, available at http://www.careerinfonet.org/occ_rep.asp?next=occ_rep&Level=&optstatus=011000000&jobfam=33&id=1&nodeid=2&soccode=333012&menuMode=&stfips=13&x=28&y=16 and published by CareerInfoNet.org, state trends are predicted to experience a decline from now until 2022 as compared to the national growth rate of 5%. This predicted pattern translates into 470 less employees per year.
Occupational Employment Statistics for Correctional Officers (http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes333012.htm)
Georgia Correctional Officer Salaries By Area
The table below lists career information collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics for correctional officers in Georgia. The table is sorted by total employment, with the largest metropolitan areas listed first.
|Area||Total Employment||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Salary|
|Atlanta, Sandy Springs, Marietta||4,210||$15.24||$31,690|
|Augusta, Richmond County||1,050||$15.11||$31,430|
|Athens, Clarke County||130||$13.24||$27,540|