How to Become a Correctional Officer in Nevada (Steps and State Requirements)

Are you ready to embark on a rewarding career in law enforcement? A career as a correctional officer in Nevada might be the perfect path for you. With competitive salaries, comprehensive benefits, and opportunities for growth, it’s time to unlock your career potential. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the process of how to become a correctional officer in Nevada, from the basic requirements to the training and certification process.

What you’re about to learn in this guide:

  • Become a Correctional Officer in Nevada by meeting minimum qualifications, passing background checks and fitness tests, obtaining POST certification and attending the Pre-Service Training Academy.

  • Job opportunities are available at various locations throughout Nevada with competitive salaries and benefits packages.

  • Obtain educational benefits as well as recruitment incentives to pursue a fulfilling career in law enforcement.

Nevada Correctional Officer: An Overview

Correctional officers are fundamental in upholding safety and security inside Nevada’s correctional facilities. As a peace officer, you’ll ensure the well-being of staff, inmates, and the public by upholding State and Federal laws and regulations while supervising the conduct of offenders.

We will examine the Nevada Department of Corrections and the role of a correctional officer.

Nevada Department of Corrections

The Nevada Department of Corrections is a state agency responsible for managing and supervising offenders within the state’s correctional facilities. With a mission to provide secure and humane conditions for offenders, the department focuses on preparing them for successful reintegration into the community. Established in 1862 with the Nevada State Prison, the department has a long-standing history of maintaining safety and security in the state’s correctional facilities.

The department oversees 15 correctional facilities, ensuring the safety of society by reducing victimization and recidivism through targeted programming and case management. Correctional officers are an integral part of achieving this vision and must successfully complete their training and perform their duties effectively.

Position Description

As a correctional officer in Nevada, your primary responsibility is to maintain order and security within the correctional facility. This includes:

  • Supervising inmates

  • Enforcing rules and regulations

  • Providing guidance and support to inmates

  • Monitoring their activities to ensure their safety

The selection process for correctional officers, which is part of the entire recruitment process, involves a thorough assessment of your knowledge, skills, and abilities through the National Testing Network (NTN) and other evaluations.

In addition to the daily supervision of inmates, you may be responsible for processing intake and release, conducting security checks, and providing transportation for medical appointments, court appearances, and work details. Given the challenging work environment, possessing effective communication skills, sound judgment, and stress management abilities is imperative. This role also performs security work overseeing and performs related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications and Requirements

Before pursuing a career as a correctional officer in Nevada, understanding the minimum qualifications and requirements is necessary. These include:

  • A high school diploma or GED

  • Being at least 21 years of age

  • Holding U.S. citizenship

  • Passing a pre-employment criminal history check and fingerprinting process

We will now examine these qualifications and requirements more thoroughly, including the testing process.


A high school diploma or GED is the minimum educational requirement to become a correctional officer in Nevada. While a college degree is not essential for progressing within the Nevada correctional system, additional training, experience, and education can enhance your advancement prospects.

Keep in mind that certain positions may require further coursework or a degree in criminal justice or a related field.

Age and Citizenship

To qualify for the position of correctional officer in Nevada, you must be at least 21 years of age. Additionally, Nevada mandates that correctional officers be U.S. citizens, with no exceptions to this requirement.

Legal U.S. residents who are not citizens are not eligible to become correctional officers in the state.

Background Check

A clean background check is critical for aspiring correctional officers in Nevada, as it allows the hiring agency to evaluate your character, trustworthiness, and suitability for the role. A felony conviction will result in automatic disqualification unless the offense occurred while you were a minor. Providing inaccurate information or documents during the background investigation process can lead to indefinite disqualification as well.

The Selection Process

Once you meet the minimum qualifications and requirements, you’ll undergo a selection process that includes the National Testing Network (NTN), a physical fitness test, and a psychological examination. This process, usually lasting between 3 and 8 weeks, aims to verify that candidates have the skills and aptitude required to succeed as correctional officers in Nevada.

National Testing Network (NTN)

The National Testing Network (NTN) is a standardized testing service used in the selection process for correctional officers in Nevada. Candidates must schedule and take the written exam with NTN within 30 days of submitting their application, and tests can be taken at any NTN site. The exams feature:

  • Practice tests

  • Item previews

  • Rationales for correct answers

  • Multiple test sections, including a reading skills evaluation

The NTN ensures that correctional officer candidates are evaluated fairly and consistently across the state. By completing an online application, supplemental questions, and written test through NTN, you’ll demonstrate your knowledge and skills, helping the hiring agency assess your suitability for the position of a correctional officer in Nevada.

Physical Fitness Test

As a correctional officer, you’ll need to be in good physical condition to perform your duties effectively. The physical fitness test for Nevada correctional officer candidates includes:

  • A 15-inch vertical jump

  • A 20.4-second agility run

  • 20 standard push-ups (no time limit)

  • A 300-meter run

To prepare for the physical fitness test, focus on improving your overall fitness level through a combination of cardiovascular exercises, strength training, and flexibility exercises. Additionally, practice the specific exercises in the test, such as running, jumping, and other agility exercises. Consistent training, a healthy diet, and sufficient rest will help you achieve your physical fitness goals and excel in the test.

Psychological Examination

Mental fitness is just as important as physical fitness for correctional officers in Nevada. The psychological examination is a comprehensive assessment that evaluates your mental health and aptitude for the demanding environment of a correctional facility. This examination includes a written psychological evaluation administered by a contracted psychological service provider, ensuring a thorough assessment of your mental and emotional fitness.

The psychological examination evaluates a variety of traits, including:

  • Emotional stability

  • Stress management

  • Judgment

  • Interpersonal skills

  • Ethics

  • Problem-solving

  • Adaptability

  • Motivation

Successfully completing this online examination demonstrates your ability to handle stressful situations and maintain a professional demeanor in the challenging work environment of a correctional facility.

Training and Certification

Following the successful completion of the selection process, the next step towards becoming a correctional officer in Nevada is training and certification. This includes obtaining Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) certification and attending the Correctional Officer Trainee Pre-Service Training Academy.

We will now examine these aspects of training and certification more thoroughly.

POST Certification

The Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) certification is a program that provides comprehensive education, training, and professional development for law enforcement officers. In Nevada, you must complete the Correctional Employee Basic Training, a minimum of 160 hours of pre-service training, to gain POST certification. This training covers topics such as:

  • Officer professionalism

  • Behavioral training

  • Introduction to corrections

  • Sexual harassment awareness

  • The psychology of being a correctional officer

Becoming POST certified is a necessary step in your journey to become a correctional officer in Nevada. The certification ensures you meet the minimum qualifications, training, and standards set by the regulatory agency, preparing you to effectively perform your duties and uphold the safety and security of the correctional facility.

Academy Training

The Correctional Officer Trainee Pre-Service Training Academy is an essential component of your training and certification process. The Academy typically lasts 20 weeks, encompassing 780 hours of training and instruction. During this time, you’ll learn about officer professionalism, behavioral training, basic job requirements, ethics of corrections, laws governing the job, criminal procedures, communication, sociology, and more, all under the guidance of the academy training team.

This comprehensive training program ensures you’re well-prepared to handle the daily challenges of working as a correctional officer in Nevada. By the end of the Academy, you’ll have the knowledge and skills needed to maintain safety and security within a correctional facility and uphold the high standards of the Nevada Department of Corrections.

Job Opportunities and Locations

With completed training and certification, you are now prepared to explore various job opportunities and locations for correctional officers in Nevada. From Carson City to Las Vegas and other correctional facilities throughout the state, there are numerous positions available for you to begin your rewarding career in law enforcement.

Carson City

Opportunities for correctional officers in Carson City, Nevada can be found at the Northern Nevada Correctional Center (NNCC) and the Warm Springs Correctional Center (WSCC). As a correctional officer at the NNCC, you’ll be responsible for maintaining and supervising inmates in a secure and humane environment, performing security work to oversee and direct the activities of inmates, and ensuring safety, security, and inmate accountability within the facility.

Both the NNCC and the WSCC offer various programs and activities for inmates, such as:

  • Vocational training

  • Educational opportunities

  • Treatment services

  • Prison industries

By working in these facilities, you’ll be contributing to the rehabilitation and reintegration of inmates while maintaining the safety and security of the community.

Las Vegas

In Las Vegas, Nevada, correctional officer positions are available at the High Desert State Prison and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. The High Desert State Prison is the largest correctional facility in Nevada, situated fifty miles northwest of Las Vegas, and the most secure prison in the state. Working at these facilities will allow you to gain valuable experience and contribute to the safety and security of the community.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department offers competitive salaries for entry-level correctional officers, ranging from $48,516 to $69,024 annually. Your training and experience as a correctional officer in Nevada will help you excel in these positions and build a fulfilling career in law enforcement.

Other Facilities

Additional correctional facilities in Nevada offering job opportunities for correctional officers include:

  • Ely State Prison

  • Lovelock Correctional Center

  • Florence McClure Women’s Correctional Center

  • Stewart Conservation Camp

Each of these facilities requires correctional officers to maintain safety and security while providing care and control of inmates.

By exploring job opportunities at these various facilities, you can find a position that aligns with your career goals and allows you to make a positive impact on the lives of inmates as well as the safety and security of the community. With numerous job openings in the field, there’s never been a better time to pursue a career as a correctional officer in Nevada.

Salary and Benefits

As a correctional officer in Nevada, expect a competitive salary coupled with an attractive benefits package. Salaries vary depending on your experience and location, but on average, correctional officers in Nevada earn between $50,000 and $55,000 annually.

In this article, we will examine the pay scales, benefits package, and government deferred compensation plan offered to correctional officers in the state more thoroughly.

Pay Scales

The pay scale for correctional officers in Nevada is dependent on experience and location. The average salary for a correctional officer in Nevada is $32.04 per hour or $50,344 per year, with a salary range from $44,765 to $55,793 per year.

Your salary as a correctional officer in Nevada may vary depending on factors such as your years of experience, rank, and the specific facility in which you work. However, the competitive pay scale ensures that you’ll be well-compensated for your dedication and hard work in maintaining the safety and security of Nevada’s correctional facilities.

Benefits Package

In addition to a competitive salary, correctional officers in Nevada enjoy an extensive benefits package. This includes retirement plans through the Public Employees’ Retirement System of Nevada (PERS), with eligible employees receiving a retirement allowance after five years of service. Additionally, correctional officers are entitled to annual vacation, sick leave, and paid holidays.

Educational benefits include incentives for officers with associate, bachelor, or master’s degrees from accredited colleges or universities, as well as housing or relocation incentives. Recruitment incentives, ranging from $1,000 to $5,000, are also available for new or lateral hires, paid over a one-year period.

With a comprehensive benefits package, a career as a correctional officer in Nevada offers financial security and opportunities for personal and professional growth.


In conclusion, a career as a correctional officer in Nevada offers numerous opportunities for growth, job security, and personal fulfillment. From meeting the minimum qualifications and requirements to completing the selection process, training, and certification, becoming a correctional officer is a challenging yet rewarding journey. With competitive salaries and an extensive benefits package, you’ll be well-compensated for your dedication to maintaining the safety and security of Nevada’s correctional facilities. Take the first step towards an exciting and fulfilling career by exploring the possibilities as a correctional officer in Nevada.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the Correctional Officer Academy in Las Vegas?

The Correctional Officer Academy in Las Vegas is a 20-week program covering 780 hours of training and instruction, followed by a 10-week field training program.

What’s the most a correctional officer can make?

The highest potential salary for a Correctional Officer or Jailer is $103,000 per year. Hawaii offers the highest average salary of $59,248 per year while California averages around $81,100. Corrections Officers are responsible for maintaining prison security and order as well as processing new prisoners.

Are correctional officers peace officers in Nevada?

Yes, correctional officers in Nevada are peace officers since they are certified by the Nevada Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST).

What is the oldest age to be a correctional officer?

The Federal Bureau of Prisons requires correctional officers to be between the ages of 20 and 37 years old, making 20 the oldest age to become a correctional officer.

What is the minimum educational requirement for becoming a correctional officer in Nevada?

To become a correctional officer in Nevada, you must have either a high school diploma or GED.

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