A Parole officer is a court agent that supervises criminal offenders, smugglers, criminals, thieves, etc. This challenging job requires a lot of vital skills as one need to work with counter criminals that are usually dangerous. It is the duty of a parole officer to ensure that individuals on parole abide by the rules and regulations decided by the court. They are mostly appointed by federal court and work at the state or local level. Although career is not much rewarding, but individuals who are drawn to criminal justice filed would surely choose this. Read on to know in detail the job responsibilities of these parole officers and how you can become the one.
Types of Parole officers
Parole officers typically may be divided into two types, according to the duties they perform or the institution in which they work. The first one is usually employed in correctional institutions and their duty is to write reports for parole boards and to find out which prisoners can be released earlier. According to his report, the board decides that which prisoners should be released early. The second one monitors the prisoners released on parole. They work as advisors and guide them for better future. They may help them in their financial matters and also help those who are struggling for employment*.
How to Become a Parole officer
To become a parole officer one needs to join a school which offers degree program in this field. Most of the educational institutes offer two to four year degree. These degree programs include all the skills which are required to in the criminal justice field. Curriculum of the program includes details of criminal justice system and how the court system works. Understanding the mental and physical conditions of prisoners is very important. After successful completion of the certification program one may apply for jobs in police stations, state or local courts. It is very necessary that the criminal background of the applicant should be clean, which includes a clean driving record. Felonies ticket, etc. are also considered at the time of interview. It is very important that you should be an ideal citizen, because those who are imprisoned may need guidance from a person with a clean record.
Individuals who are looking for a future in this field must possess a valid driver license and should be of at least 21 years. To apply in certain organizations as Parole officers, the candidates are required to have a Bachelors degree in psychology, criminal justice, or other associated fields. For acquiring higher posts in this field you may need to have some experience as well as Masters degree in the same field. To provide training to individuals, certain programs are conducted by the state or federal government also. They offer certificates on completion which can help in acquiring jobs**. Besides educational requirements, the individual must be physically and psychologically fit, too.
Employment and Salary
According to The Bureau of Labor Statistics, Parole officers are earning around $48,190 on average per year. This can vary based on location, experience, and other such factors. Some parole officers may earn as much as $83,410 annually or more***.
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*For more information, please visit: http://careers.stateuniversity.com/pages/728/Parole-Officer.html
**For more information, please visit: http://www.ok.gov/opm/jfd/i-specs/i40.htm
***For more information, please visit: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Community-and-Social-Service/Probation-officers-and-correctional-treatment-specialists.htm