CRC Warden Tampkins pitches CDCR to college students

Warden Cynthia Y. Tampkins talks to students.

By Lt. Sarah Watson, AA/Public Information Officer
California Rehabilitation Center

Warden Cynthia Y. Tampkins of the California Rehabilitation Center was the featured guest lecturer for Introduction to Correctional Science class recently at Mount San Antonio College.

Mt. San Antonio College (commonly called Mt. SAC) is a community college in the Los Angeles suburb of Walnut, California.

Warden Tampkins, a graduate of the University of Southern California, spoke to an audience of freshman and sophomore students about her life story, career, history, and the importance of a college education.  She provided insight on the evolution of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR), and recent changes such as the three-judge panel decision and the American Correctional Association’s accreditation process.

Freshman student Refugio Juarez asked Warden Tampkins: “What do you think is the most important part of your job?”

Warden Tampkins said: “I believe it is our job in the department to fight recidivism by offering rehabilitative options to the inmates. I have about 3,000 inmates at my prison and every one of them will be released into your neighborhoods in 10 years or less. So, unless we help them find a different option or skill, they may commit additional crimes in your area.”

Warden Tampkins left the students encouraged about their decision to pursue a career in criminal justice, and intrigued about the vast career opportunities CDCR has available.

Mt. Sac is among the largest community colleges in California with 57,319 students. Mt. SAC has a robust Administration of Justice department which affords students an associates of arts degree.

One of the department’s core classes is Introduction to Correctional Science.  The class is a California State University qualifying course and a prerequisite for higher level classes in the same major.



2 Responses

  1. Brian Terhaar Friday, January 20, 2017 / 8:56 am

    I commend you on your dedication to higher education and community college students specifically. I started in a community college many years ago, and I am a recent graduate myself (with my second bachelor’s degree in nursing); I changed careers and started my new career with CDCR as a Registered Nurse. The correctional nursing career path was lacking information at my university-which seems to be a common theme at many schools of nursing–though I wish I had received more information. In my particular situation, I had one psychiatric-mental health clinical professor who had previous experience in corrections, and she opened my eyes to a possible career in correctional nursing. Now, here I am with CDCR, and I believe my co-workers are amazing. So far, I am thoroughly enjoying my position with CDCR.

    B. Terhaar, BSN, RN
    Salinas Valley State Prison

  2. M. D. Williams Friday, January 13, 2017 / 5:35 pm

    Excellent article! Thank you AAPIO Lt. Watson. What a great article reminding us of the importance of completing our education. It is always nice when CDCR staff take out time to explain the complexities and enormous rewards of working for the Department of Corrections and Rehailitation. Our goal as staff is always to see the big picture, rehabilitation and corrections work hand in hand. Preparing inmates to re-enter the community well equipped to be law abiding citizen’s is important. It is a win-win for everyone involved for generations to come.

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