How to become a prison governor
You can get into this job through:
- working towards this role
- a management training scheme
You may be able to start as a prison officer and work your way up with further training and experience. You'll need several years' experience, including line management.
You would generally move into senior management jobs and eventually deputy governorship roles, then governor.
Companies that run private prisons have their own entry requirements. You can find details of privately managed prisons from Ministry of Justice
You can apply to join the Senior Leadership Scheme. This is a 3-year training scheme available from Her Majesty's Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS). Vacancies are advertised online and through social media when a recruitment campaign is taking place.
You may have an advantage if you've got a degree, though it's not essential. Employers are just as interested in what you've achieved throughout your career.
Experience in management and excellent communication skills, as well as assertiveness and integrity, are important.
You can also apply through the Unlocked Graduates programme. This is a 2-year fast-track leadership development route available to graduates, who:
- meet the HMPPS eligibility criteria
- already have, or are expecting to get, an upper second class degree
- have GCSE grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) in English and maths
- have the right to work in the UK for the length of the programme
You'll study for a postgraduate master's in Applied Custodial Leadership as part of the training.
You can find out more about working in prisons from Her Majesty's Prison and Probation Service.