Training to make a difference

Training to make a difference

All prison officers have to undergo rigorous training at the Prison Staff Training School before they start work.

Shaffiq Alkhatib visits it and speaks to former, current and prison officers to-be to learn more about their experiences.

Future officer: Seeing a fight decided it for me 

When he was in secondary school, he witnessed several fights.

Some of his friends even got into trouble with the law.

And one of the incidents spurred Sergeant Muhammad Rizal Samsudin, 24, to join the Singapore Prisons Service.

Now one of the 21 recruits undergoing the 24-week Prison Officer Course at the PSTS, he recalled the incident, which happened right outside his school.

He said: "I didn't know what they were quarrelling about but they were loud and they used vulgar language.

"I thought to myself, how did these people end up like that? That's one of the reasons why I wanted to become a uniformed officer.

"And I joined SPS as I want to help others, especially in rehabilitation."

Current officer: It is my calling Former prison

With a business degree, she could have easily worked in the corporate world.

Instead, Assistant Superintendent (ASP) Joyce Wong (left, with whistle) decided to join the Singapore Prison Service (SPS).

The 32-year-old is now a senior trainer at the Prison Staff Training School (PSTS), housed within the Home Team Academy.

ASP Wong teaches operation-related topics such as ways to better manage inmates, and leads the trainees in physical fitness activities.

She has been an SPS officer for seven years.

One of four girls in her family, she told TNP that her parents' support was integral in her choice to work in the service.

"It was my calling. And my parents were supportive of my decision though they were surprised as in school, I was never part of any uniformed group," ASP Wong said.

She gets a sense of satisfaction when she is able to help inmates change for the better and reintegrate into society.

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