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portrait of Heather Cureton

Heather Cureton

Parole Officer

Criminal Justice

Graduated in 2017

Explain your career path

I am a Parole Officer at the Eastern Reception Diagnostic Correctional Center in Bonne Terre, MO. I absolutely love my career I chose.

What was your major at Southeast and what led you to that?

Criminal Justice-Corrections
I chose this major after speaking to a few mentors in the CJ field. I told them where my heart was and they gave me a potential path. I chose the path and I could not be more happy. I am proud to tell people that my degree is from SEMO.

Why did you choose to attend Southeast?

My mother graduated from SEMO. Also the CJ staff is amazing!!

Who influenced you most during your time at Southeast?

My biggest influence was Ms. Krieger in the Criminal justice department. She was a teacher, friend, mentor and confidant. She always rooted for me. She pushed me even when I didn't know how to keep going.

Share your best college memory.

My best college memory is going on prison tours with Ms. Krieger and Professor Blasdell. It was so much fun and informational. We laughed so much on those trips. Thanks for being a huge part of why I am where I am today.

What is the most important thing you learned while you were at Southeast?

I learned I can do more than I give myself credit for.

Describe Southeast in three words.

Strong United Proud

What is your greatest professional accomplishment?

Obtaining the job I wanted.

How did your education at Southeast prepare you for what you are doing today?

It is the whole reason of why I am prepared for my job. The staff and curriculum combined helped prepare me.

What advice would you give current students or recent graduates interested in pursuing a career in your professional field?

Keep going even when it gets hard! The end result is worth it.

What do you wish you had known before graduating and entering the "real world"?

I should've focused more on my time management skills.


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College of Humanities and Social Sciences
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Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701