Warwick residents Thomas R. Cole III, Rene Gauthier, Joseph Perry, Alyssa A. Pratt and Dannyra Mijares were among the 44 men and 12 women to graduate with the Rhode Island Department of Corrections’ Correctional Officer Training Academy Class 79 on Friday, April 20 at 2 p.m. at Rhode Island College’s Gaige Hall.
Family and friends of the graduates and RIDOC staff attended the ceremony where U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha was the invited keynote speaker. Corrections Director A.T. Wall also spoke, commending the graduates for making it to this point, noting that more than 4,000 people applied during the recruitment period.
During the arduous nine-week schedule, participants undergo physical fitness and weapons training and on-the-job training and have classroom instruction in defensive tactics, communication skills, and the law as it relates to correctional officers. The Sunday following graduation, the new class of correctional officers began by shadowing more senior officers for a two-week period, after which they were assigned to posts in one of the prisons.