Cadetship in Criminal Justice

Cadetship in Criminal Justice

Chelsea Dunn, a dedicated cadet in the Offender Development Directorate of the Department for Correctional Services, shares her impactful journey in criminal justice. The article delves into the emotional challenges and rewards of her multifaceted position, emphasising teamwork.

Chelsea, studying Social Work full-time, envisions a future where her four-year cadetship shapes a fulfilling career. As an inspiration, she encourages aspiring cadets, showcasing the self-discovery and confidence gained through such opportunities. Chelsea’s narrative encapsulates the blend of passion, education, and real-world influence.

1. Why did you take on a cadetship?

I took on this cadetship within the Department for Correctional Services as a way to gain experience in this particular the field of work whilst also putting the content I am learning into practice. This opportunity will hopefully assist me in gaining employment in the field once I graduate with the appropriate qualifications.
 2. What is your ancestry?
I consider myself biracial as I have both Aboriginal and English ancestry. I was fortunate enough to be born on Kaurna land, however, I am a proud Warmuli and Gamilaroi woman from the Darug language group, Prospect Sydney, NSW.
3. What is the best part of your role?
I don’t think I can narrow it down to the one best part of my role as there are many. Within this role I have the opportunity to support Aboriginal prisoners, offenders, and their families during what is often a challenging and emotional time. I also get to work alongside a great team who are supportive and encouraging, and from whom I have learnt so much.
4. How do you think the cadetship will benefit your future?
I believe that this cadetship will benefit me in the future as it has given me an opportunity to start building the career I have always wanted. I am able to partake in full time degree studying Social Work while simultaneously working two days per week within the Department for Correctional Services. Once I finish my degree, I will have already had 4 years’ experience within the field, which I believe will give me an advantage when applying for Social Work positions.
5. What’s your advice to someone who is thinking of taking on a cadetship? 
If you have the opportunity to take up a cadetship, do it! I felt more confident engaging with course content at Uni as I had background knowledge of this particular field of practice. And I have also learnt a great deal about myself through the experiences I have had at work.
In conclusion, Chelsea Dunn’s cadetship journey stands as a testament to the transformative power of experiential learning in criminal justice. With a commitment to bridging theory and practice, Chelsea navigates emotional challenges with unwavering support from her dedicated team. Studying Social Work full-time, she envisions a future shaped by four years of hands-on experience. Chelsea’s advice echoes with encouragement for aspiring cadets, emphasising the confidence and self-discovery gained through seizing such valuable opportunities.

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