BC Correctional Officer Rae-Lynn Hickerson appreciates the career opportunities BC Corrections provides, in addition to the ability to strike a work-life balance.

BC Correctional Officer Rae-Lynn Hickerson appreciates the career opportunities BC Corrections provides, in addition to the ability to strike a work-life balance.

‘People first’ organization where you can really make a difference.

BC Corrections to boost hiring numbers with professionals passionate about making a difference

Rae-Lynn Hickerson was attending Lethbridge College when a networking day introduced her to some of the many career possibilities.

But it was BC Corrections that really captured her interest.

“I thought it was really interesting,” she says of her impression of the career opportunity with BC Corrections.

A subsequent practicum at Lethbridge Correctional Centre in Alberta settled her professional path.

“One of my passions is helping people so I saw it as a great opportunity to do that,” Hickerson says, reflecting on the education and experience she calls upon in her work. “I get to take what I learned in sociology and psychology and I get to use it and implement it.”

Today, Hickerson is a Correctional Officer (CO) at the Okanagan Correctional Centre, a regional correctional centre that holds inmates of all levels of security that are either serving a sentence or are being held in custody while awaiting court appearances.

Opportunities for career growth

Over the coming months, the BC Corrections’ Adult Custody Division plans to double the number of new officers it typically hires – offering meaningful careers for men and women with the skills and personal qualities needed in today’s peace officers.

“BC Corrections is very welcoming to all walks of life. There are all different types of inmates and everyone reacts differently to different people,” Hickerson says, also pointing to the progressive training, with ongoing education and training opportunities that BC Corrections provides.

“I have always said that our staff are our greatest asset,” says Stephanie Macpherson, Provincial Director, BC Corrections. “We are a ‘people first’ organization – which means we are always thinking of the people when we make decisions, and as we develop our principles, values and goals. People matter, whether it’s the inmate in our custody or our staff who want to help support that person in custody who wants to turn their life around. We continue to invest in our staff to ensure our organization is agile, responsive and able to excel in pursuing its mission of public safety.”

Work-life balance

At this point in her life, Hickerson enjoys the four-days-on, four-days-off schedule many Correctional Officers follow – it lets her enjoy all the Okanagan has to offer, or visit her hometown of Cranbrook, for example.

However, BC Corrections’ management also works to find the best options for Correctional Officers whose families’ lives or other needs might require a different schedule.

Flexibility extends to career opportunities within the system, from working in program areas like metal shop, to working in the records department, managing day to day operations and supervisory positions. There’s also educational assistance and a good benefits package and pension plan.

“There are tons of opportunities to move up, if that’s what you want to do,” Hickerson says.

Giving back

Today, Hickerson looks forward to returning to Lethbridge College’s networking day, this time representing BC Corrections and engaging others with the possibilities.

“You have a real opportunity to make a difference in someone’s life, to implement different programs and hopefully prevent them from coming back,” Hickerson says.

“I feel very lucky to be here.”

Just Posted

The Stuart Park ice rink in January 2020. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna’s Stuart Park outdoor ice rink opening delayed

Recent provincial health orders have again shifted the city’s strategy regarding the popular rink

Police service dog Fitz helped track and rescue a lost hiker and his dog in Kelowna. (Kelowna RCMP)
Kelowna police dog Fitz dies of cancer

Fitz recently helped locate a lost hiker in the Central Okanagan

Photo of the suspect wanted for breaking and entering into a building in the 800 block of Saucier Avenue in Kelowna on Nov. 10, 2020. (Contributed)
Woman wanted for stealing mail from Kelowna apartment

If you recognize this person of interest call Crime Stoppers or the RCMP

Mason Sodaro played Kelowna Secondary School Volleyball team during the 2019-20 season. (Contributed)
Kelowna volleyball player joins Thompson Rivers University Wolfpack

Mason Sodaro will dress for the Wolfpack in the 2021 season

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest day of pandemic with 13 deaths, 738 new COVID-19 cases

Number of people in hospital is nearing 300, while total cases near 30,000

City of Armstrong Public Works Yard. (Google Maps)
Armstrong city staffer threatened in snow removal complaint

Community services manager says ‘veiled threat’ is believed to have been flippant, but is being taken seriously

B.C. Premier John Horgan, a Star Trek fan, can’t resist a Vulcan salute as he takes the oath of office for a second term in Victoria, Nov. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
Horgan names 20-member cabinet with same pandemic team

New faces in education, finance, economic recovery

The Okanagan Quality Life Society which usually gives tours of Okanagan Lake to seniors and shut-ins on its boat Heaven Can Wait has created a virtual tour video in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic which shut down the tours in 2020. (Morning Star - file photo)
Okanagan Lake virtual boat tours launched

Okanagan Quality Life Society normally gives tours on Okanagan Lake on its boat Heaven Can Wait

The Allan Brooks Nature Centre is kicking off a Light The Night fundraising campaign online to help with Christmas shopping for the public and fundraising for the popular Vernon attraction. (ABNC Photo)
Light the Night campaign boosts North Okanagan nature centre

Allan Brooks Society hosting online auction of 12 items; donations can also be made to help centre

Resident wants City of Salmon Arm to take action to eradicate rat population in town. (File photo)
Salmon Arm resident demands action to eradicate rats

City posts more information on social media, will consider more action at budget time

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A billboard located on an agricultural property along Highway 97B is in violation of a CSRD zoning bylaw. (CSRD photo)
Property owner must remove sign on Highway 97B south of Salmon Arm

Variance to allow oversized sign denied by Columbia Shuswap Regional District

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Most Read