Oswego officers will lay foundation for new unit
The twelve graduates of the Basic Officer Training Course, along with eight transfers from other facilities, will help transform the former Labette Correctional Conservation Camp into a unit that will house 262 primarily infirmed and elderly inmates.
“You members of this first class are the people who will set the standard,” Dep. Warden Mary Nelson told the group. “You will be role models for others to follow. How you act, how you apply what you learned from your training, will determine the success of this facility.”
This group of new officers, which began its training on November 1, was celebrated by family and friends and members of the Oswego community, which will benefit from jobs for more than 50 KDOC employees in their community.
“This was one of the better classes I’ve had,” commented Staff Development Specialist Chuck Morris following the ceremony. “They were enthusiastic, motivated, eager to learn.”
Morris said that, because of the special nature of the majority of the inmates who will stay at the Oswego facility, additional training was provided to the group by the Central Plains Geriatric Education Center, a part of the Landon Center on Aging at the University of Kansas Medical Center.
“Once we got to actual training, when they grasped that they were going to be setting the foundation for years to come, the ownership started taking place amongst this group of trainees,” said Morris.
A second group of trainees will graduate in mid-January, and a third should follow in the spring. Eventually Oswego will have 43 positions for corrections officers.
EDCF Warden James Heimgartner challenged the group to embody a list of character qualities, highlighted by integrity, trust, respect and loyalty, as he distributed the certificates of completion of the program.