ACCS career readiness program aims to reduce barriers for future Alabama correctional officers

MONTGOMERY — Registration is open for a new, no-cost college and career readiness program aimed at reducing barriers for those who need additional assistance to become Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC) correctional officers.

Residents who apply to become correctional officers may now be selected to participate in ACTIVATE, a joint venture between ADOC and the Alabama Community College System (ACCS) that helps residents meet the physical and educational pre-hiring requirements for correctional officer positions. Successful completion of ACTIVATE could result in up to nine college credit hours at an Alabama community college, in addition to preparing them for the Corrections Academy and a career with the ADOC.

The ACTIVATE program is made available to residents through funding from the Alabama Legislature.

“There are plenty of applicants who want to serve our state by becoming well-trained correctional officers, but they need extra help to reach that goal. The ACTIVATE program is a huge leap toward ensuring their success and the success of Alabama’s correctional facilities,” said Alabama Department of Corrections Commissioner John Q. Hamm.

“We appreciate the Alabama Legislature and the Alabama Community College System working alongside us to bring this program to reality.”

“The Alabama Community College System is both proactive and responsive to meeting the needs of academic training and workforce development in Alabama, and this collaboration with the Department of Corrections is just one of many examples of how we support residents and the state in achieving their goals,” said Jimmy H. Baker, Chancellor of the Alabama Community College System.

In addition to ACTIVATE, the ACCS offers more than six public safety training classes statewide and at no cost to current law enforcement officers. ACCS Chief Safety and Security Officer Mark Bailey said more than 1,200 law enforcement officers have earned their required Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for day-long courses in basic crime scene investigation, basic evidence collection, crisis negotiation for first responders and more across the state at Alabama’s community and technical colleges.

The training started in January in collaboration with the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Alabama, the Alabama Fire College and the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency and State Bureau of Investigation.

“Our footprint of 24 community colleges puts us in the best position to be able to offer training that is convenient to law enforcement officers in both our metro and rural communities across Alabama,” said Bailey.

“These sessions reflect our commitment to proactive, comprehensive training,” said Chief Jay Freeman of Gadsden State Community College’s Police and Public Safety Department. “These opportunities not only enhance the capabilities of our officers but also create a safer environment for everyone.”

More information on the free training is available at

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