15:55 PM

Mohawk College to deliver foundational training for Ontario correctional officer recruits

Pilot marks the first comprehensive training partnership between the province and an Ontario community college

Mohawk College is launching a new provincial pilot project in collaboration with the Ministry of the Solicitor General and The Correctional Services Recruitment and Training Centre, providing foundational training for correctional officer recruits.

The new project, starting this week, will involve an 18-month virtual training program in which Mohawk College provides instruction on complex topics in foundational training subjects, such as human rights, communication, de-escalation, mental health and anti-racism issues. The Correctional Services Recruitment and Training Centre, located in Hamilton, will continue to provide the skills-based practical and experiential training components of correctional officer recruit development.

“Mohawk College has significant experience in the successful delivery of accessible, rapid skills training across a number of sectors and throughout a number of jurisdictions,” said Alison Horton, Mohawk College Vice President, Academic. “We are eager to support the Correctional Services Recruitment and Training Centre to provide new recruits across the province with foundational skills training that will assist them in dealing with sensitive and complex situations in their work. This pilot project represents an opportunity to help public safety employees gain important professional development skills that can serve them well as they pursue their challenging careers.”

Mohawk College designed a remote/virtual learning environment to present the ministry’s training curriculum to effectively deliver the program and increase access to participation for people across the province. As the instruction of these courses is being delivered virtually, the program can help to reduce both financial and geographic barriers to recruitment and employment and makes it more accessible for participants across the province, including Northern Ontario.

“Our government continues to make progress on our commitment to hire more staff, increase access to training and strengthen Ontario’s correctional system,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. “Leveraging Mohawk College’s expertise in curriculum design and virtual learning, alongside the ministry’s strength in experiential, skills-based training will help increase access to participation and encourage more people to consider a career that contributes to the safety and well-being of our communities.”

“This is a great example of how collaboration can leverage our collective strengths and contribute to high-quality solutions to address community needs,” said Mohawk College Dean of Health Sciences, Wendy Lawson. “A core element of our mandate is to develop relevant and accessible training options for everyone and this program demonstrates a focus on graduate success, community integration and partnerships. Mohawk College is proud to bring its expertise in Justice Studies education to this initiative and is excited to contribute to the Corrections Foundational Training – Correctional Officer program.”

The announcement of this pilot project was made in conjunction with a larger announcement by the Ministry of the Solicitor General around the compensation and support of recruits.