State welcomes new class of correctional officers

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The state Department of Public Safety welcomed a new class of adult correctional officers Friday.

A graduation ceremony took place at the Hawaii Okinawa Center in Waipahu.

Twenty-seven recruits graduated from basic training, and will begin their careers as correctional officers in facilities across the state.

The nine-week training course included 360 hours of classroom time and physical training.

Recruits learn standard of conduct, professionalism and ethics, report writing, interpersonal communications, maintaining security, crisis intervention, security threat groups (gangs), firearms, self-defense tactics, and physical exercise.

“It’s been amazing. It’s a great feeling. I know me and all my comrades up on the stage were very proud, but I think moreover we’ve learned so much about ourselves in the last nine weeks,” said recruit Kristine Najim.

“It’s a big weight off our shoulders,” said recruit Efren Ziegler. “It’s very educational and now that it’s over, I feel that I myself and the rest of the colleagues are more well-rounded and educated.”

During the final weeks of their course, all recruits get hands-on training at the facilities that they’ve been assigned to.

The 27 graduates have been assigned to the following correctional centers/facilities:

  • Oahu Community Correctional Center: 7
  • Maui Community Correctional Center: 6
  • Women’s Community Correctional Center: 4
  • Halawa Correctional Facility: 4
  • Hawaii Community Correctional Center: 3
  • Waiawa Correctional Facility: 2
  • Kulani Correctional Facility: 1

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