Florida Department of Corrections creates pathway to success for inmates prior to release

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — In line with the mission to provide further opportunities for success upon release, FDC staff collaborated with the Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) to implement a professional licensing application and testing process within FDC institutions. This initiative provides a pathway for eligible inmates who have completed required vocational coursework to take state board exams.

“This initiative is indicative of our commitment to restoration and rehabilitation efforts within Florida’s correctional system. Obtaining professional licensure prior to release removes potential barriers and allows returning citizens to seamlessly transition into an in-demand and sustainable career,” said Secretary Mark Inch. “We look forward to seeing FDC program graduates return to their communities with a professional license in hand, ready for work.”

Prior to these coordinated pathways for licensing, inmates within FDC institutions who completed vocational courses for careers which required a professional license were not able to take exams until after they were released, sometimes months after completion of coursework.

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 Three inmates from Lowell Correctional Institution’s cosmetology program have already seized this opportunity. The program graduates applied to the State of Florida Board of Cosmetology for licenses, passed the state exam and received their official professional cosmetology licenses, all prior to their upcoming release. The three have plans to seek employment opportunities and begin work as cosmetologists immediately upon release. 

 For more information on FDC programs, visit our Office of Programs and Re-Entry website. 

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