Private prison serves as classroom for inmates

YOUNGSTOWN — A prison gives an image of a dark, damp place where people are kept in cells and stay put for the most part.

But that was not the case recently at the CoreCivic Northeast Ohio Correctional Center on Youngstown-Hubbard Road.

Inmates were working, sweeping floors, cleaning

offices, using the library and talking.

One person they talked to frequently was Warden Christopher J. LaRose, who worked himself up from a starting job as a corrections officer to a warden, first at Trumbull Correctional Institution, then at NEOCC.

“During the day there’s a lot of movement,” LaRose said.

A recent training session was full. LaRose said the prison is adding more employees, but those employees do not work a shift until they receive at least 250 hours of training. New hires also undergo background checks by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Justice Department and CoreCivic before they are accepted, LaRose said.

“They go through a very detailed screening process,” LaRose said.

The prison also leans heavily toward CoreCivic’s mission of getting inmates prepared for life after they’re released.

For the complete story, read Sunday's Vindicator and

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