Photo (left to right): Dr. Marilyn Murphy Fore, HGTC President, Solicitor Jimmy Richardson, Fifteenth Judicial Circuit Solicitor's Office, Sheriff Phillip Thompson, Horry County Sheriff's Office, Sheriff Carter Weaver, Georgetown County Sheriff's Office, Dr. Dan Wysong, HGTC Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean for the School of Public Service, Dr. Jennifer Wilbanks, HGTC Executive Vice President for Academic and Workforce Development
Horry-Georgetown Technical College (HGTC), in collaboration with the Horry County and Georgetown County Sheriff's Offices, is thrilled to unveil a new initiative aimed at addressing the continuous demand for dedicated correctional officers at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center and the Georgetown County Detention Center. The Correctional Officer Program, designed as a comprehensive four-course certificate program, equips students with the knowledge and skills required to excel in the challenging world of correctional services.
“HGTC is delighted to partner with the Horry County and Georgetown County Sheriff's Offices in this endeavor. This is part of our ongoing commitment to providing top-tier education and professional training for our community. Together, we aim to fortify the ranks of correctional officers and enhance the safety and security of our region,” said Dr. Marilyn Murphy Fore, HGTC President.
Dr. Dan Wysong, HGTC Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean for the School of Public Service, has been working closely with the Horry County Sheriff’s Office and the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office to develop the program.
“The program combines classroom education at HGTC's Conway Campus with practical, hands-on experience within the correctional environment, supervised by seasoned correctional staff. Participants will gain valuable insights into professional and personal information handling, effective communication, financial management, and stress and conflict management. What sets this program apart is the opportunity it offers to students once successfully completed,” said Dr. Wysong.
Upon meeting the eligibility criteria, graduates may secure full-time employment as a correctional officer with one of the Sheriff's Offices, including a competitive full-time salary and an array of benefits after successfully finishing the Basic Correctional Officer Program at the South Carolina Criminal Justice Academy in Columbia, South Carolina.
Applicants must meet the following requirements:
- Be 18 years of age or turn 18 upon completion of the Correctional Officer Program at HGTC.
- Successfully pass a drug screening.
- Clear a Criminal Background Check (CBC) and meet all pre-employment screening requirements set by the Sheriffs’ Offices.
Sheriff Phillip Thompson of Horry County shared his enthusiasm about this collaboration, stating, "This program provides a pathway for individuals interested in serving their community and working within our correctional facilities. It's a remarkable opportunity to develop a rewarding career in law enforcement."
Sheriff Carter Weaver of Georgetown County added, "We're proud to be part of this initiative that not only educates and prepares individuals for a vital role in our criminal justice system but also contributes to the betterment of our local communities."
“We are thrilled to announce that there is currently zero tuition cost for the Correctional Officer Program, making this an accessible and affordable opportunity for aspiring correctional officers,” continued Dr. Fore.