Federal Correctional Institution - Waseca

Federal Correctional Institution - Waseca, or FCI Waseca, is a low-security federal facility located in Waseca, Minnesota. Currently, the facility houses 659 female inmates. It was converted into a prison in 1992 after serving as a University of Minnesota campus.

Inmates are housed in dormitories consisting of two and four-person cubicles or four-person rooms.

Originally, FCI Waseca was an all-male facility that used many of the buildings from the former college. One of the notable inmates from that time was Jeffrey Skilling, the CEO of Enron, who was convicted of insider trading and securities fraud.

In 2008, he was transferred to FCI Englewood when the facility was converted into an all-female prison.

One former notable female inmate is Shelley Shannon, who was a member of the extremist group Army of God. She served ten years in state prison for the attempted murder of George Tiller, a Kansas abortion doctor. She also pleaded guilty to firebombing six abortion clinics, and served a 20-year sentence before her release in 2018.

Catherine Greig, former girlfriend of Irish Mob figure Whitey Bulger, is currently serving a sentence for harboring a fugitive and identity fraud when she helped Bulger evade capture. She was originally sentenced to 21 months, but after disciplinary action her time was extended and she is scheduled to be released in 2020.

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Federal Correctional Institution - Waseca

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Visiting Hours and Rules

The following information is for visits with inmates who are in general population. Visits with inmates who are in special housing units or in special custody status will have their own rules. Please contact the institution for more information.

Visiting hours at FCI Waseca are as follows: Fridays from 4:30 pm to 8:30 pm, and Saturdays, Sundays, and all Federal holidays from 8:30 A.M. until 3:00 P.M.

The maximum number of persons allowed to visit an inmate at one time is five adults and five children.

Getting on the Approved Visit List

Authorized visitors who can visit an inmate include family, friends, and associates. You can't visit an inmate unless she puts you on the visiting list.

Everyone must fill out a visitor form, and they must have a relationship with the inmate prior to incarceration. If a potential visitor does not have a prior relationship with the inmate, their request will be reviewed by the warden.

Once the inmate requests to add someone to their visit list, a correctional counselor will provide them with a visiting form, and the inmate is responsible for mailing these out and letting the potential visitor know that they need to fill out the form and return it to the institution staff.

The unit team will do a background check and determine if a visitor application is approved. They make their decision based on constructive and security factors. The process takes about a week, and the unit staff will notify the inmate when the requested visitor is approved or refused.

It is the inmate’s responsibility to notify the visitor of the decision, and the process is the same for both adult and minor visitors.

Basic Visit Procedures and Rules

If you are 16 years of age or older, you must bring a valid photo ID with you to the visit, like a state or federal ID card, driver's license, military ID, or current passport. Birth certificates are not valid forms of ID.

All visitors are subject to a visual and pat search by an officer. You will also be scanned by a metal detector.

Any item you bring into the facility will be opened and searched by a staff member, and anyone who refuses a search of themselves or their property will not be allowed to visit with the inmate.

Visitors are not authorized to bring any item into the institution to give to an inmate. Personal items not allowed in the institution must be returned to the visitor's personal vehicle.

Cell phones, pagers, cameras, FItbits, or electronic devices of any type are not authorized inside the institution.

The following items are not permitted in the Visiting Room:

  • Handbags (Purses) 
  • Lotion
  • Paperwork
  • Wallets
  • Lipstick/Chapstick
  • Packages
  • Toys
  • Newspapers/Magazines
  • Greeting Cards
  • Food/Candy/Gum
  • Wrist Watches
  • Photographs
  • Umbrellas
  • Baby Strollers
  • Infant Carriers
  • Tobacco Products
  • Diaper Bags
  • Scarves
  • Gloves
  • Electronic Cigarettes or Vaping Systems 

Visitors will be instructed to leave items of this type in their automobiles. Visitors using public transportation (i.e., bus, taxi, etc.) may use the lockers in the Front Entrance Building.

When a visitor is assigned a locker, he/she will be issued a corresponding chit which the visitor will retain during the visit. The key will be kept with the Front Lobby Officer in the lockbox.

At the time the visitor returns to the Front Lobby they will return the chit to receive the key to the locker. Once the property has been removed and the locker is secure the visitor will give the key back to the Front Lobby Officer to receive their Identification Card.

Staff will use sound correctional judgment when allowing visitors to bring in medication. Ordinarily, only medicine which is necessary to sustain life, such as heart medication and asthma inhalers, will be allowed into the Visiting Room.

No prescribed narcotic substances is allowed. During visiting, medication will be maintained by the Visiting Room #1 Officer. One visitor per group will be allowed to bring in one automobile key or remote into the Visiting Room.

Items for infant needs (i.e., small receiving blanket, diapers, baby food, baby bottles, baby wipes, sippy cups) are permitted but must be inspected for contraband prior to permitting them into the Visiting Room.

Visitors refusing to have these items inspected must return them to their automobiles. Visitors failing to comply with either of these options will be denied entrance into the institution.

Any infant food product that has been opened, will not be allowed to enter the institution. Pre-mixed bottles of infant formula will be allowed in the Visiting Room.

Visitors will be allowed $20.00 per adult spending money, not to exceed $60.00 per group. Clear plastic coin purses no larger than 8 inches by 8 inches may be used to store money.

Due to the diverse types of visitors and the fact that the Visiting Room is not a public facility, certain restrictions must be placed on visitors’ clothing.

The following attire will not be allowed:

  • Tight clothing
  • Transparent clothing
  • Spandex clothing
  • Tank tops  
  • Halter tops/sleeveless shirts
  • Holes in clothing
  • Wrap-around skirts
  • Hats or caps
  • Camouflage clothing
  • Grey sweatpants, sweatshirts, thermals
  • Green, Khaki, and Orange colored pants, shirts or skirts
  • Plunging necklines that expose back, cleavage or chest (i.e. V-necks, Scoop necks
  • Opened toed, or open heeled shoes, (i.e., sandals or slip-ons for both male & female), it is necessary for all visitors to wear shoes
  • Shorts and skirts that are higher than the top of the knee when standing
  • No attire with questionable wording, i.e., gang affiliation, profanity, etc.
  • No shirts that hang less than 3 inches below the belt line
  • Jackets, coats, or sweaters will only be allowed during the months of October through May Scarves and Gloves are not allowed in the Visiting Room

Younger children will be allowed appropriate outerwear year round. Upon arrival in the Visiting Room outerwear will be stored in a designated area. Any questionable clothing will be cleared through the Institution Duty Officer or the Operations Lieutenant before being allowed into the Visiting Room.

Physical Address

WASECA, MN  56093

Driving Directions: https://goo.gl/maps/myEAGRinPYC2

General Phone Number & Email Address

Phone: 507-835-8972
Email: WAS/[email protected]

Inmate Mailing Address(es)

P.O. BOX 1731
WASECA, MN 56093

There is no limit on the amount of mail that inmates receive, but all correspondence must have the inmate’s complete name, registration number, facility name, and address.

You can only send cards or letters to these addresses. Paperback books, newspapers, and magazines must come directly from the publisher via a subscription or mail order.

Inmates cannot receive packages through the mail, with the exception of a package of release day clothing. You can't send the release day package until 30 days prior to the scheduled release date.

The inmate must contact her Correctional Counselor 45 days prior to her release to get an Authorization to Receive Package Request form, which allows these items to be received by the facility.

Items must come from a single source, in a single shipment, in a single box. Inmates can receive 2 pairs of pants, 2 shirts, 1 jacket, 1 pair of shoes, 3 sets of underclothes and a gym bag or backpack or small carry-on style suitcase.

Items should be mailed through the U.S. Postal Service. The facility does not accept packages received through private carrier or courier companies, nor can these items be hand delivered.

No single item should be valued at over $100.00. If flying, all bags and items must conform to FFA guidelines. No electronic devices, money, credit cards, gift cards, letters or notes, phone cards, jewelry, blankets, pillows, towels, PJ's, food items, books, magazines, etc... can be received, only the release clothing listed on the package authorization.

Any additional or unauthorized items can cause the package to be not issued to the inmate and the inmate will incur the cost of mailing these items back to the sender.

How to Call an Inmate

Federal inmates are not allowed to have cellphones and they can't receive inbound calls. They can make outbound calls during approved hours, and they must pay for them with the money that is on their personal account or call collect.

Inmates will use TRULINCS to call to both landline and cell phones. This is also how inmates are able to send and receive emails. Your number must be added to the contact list for approval.

All phone calls are limited to 15 minutes, and will be monitored and recorded.

How to Send Money

Sending money is one of most important things you can do for an inmate. The prison will issue each prisoner the minimum amount of clothing and hygiene items, and provide them with three meals a day. But, it is extremely difficult for prisoners to have any level of comfort when living with just the items that are prison-issued.

Inmates can receive outside funds while incarcerated at a BOP-managed facility, which are deposited into their commissary accounts.

Postal Service

For federal prisoners, you can send money through the United States Postal Service by MONEY ORDER to the following address:

Federal Bureau of Prisons
Inmate Name
Eight-Digit Register Number
Post Office Box 474701
Des Moines, Iowa 50947-0001

Send the funds to the address above. Replace the second line with the inmate's valid, full committed name. Replace the third line with the inmate's eight digit register number.

Never send money directly to the prison. If you are using the postal service, you must always send your money order to the bureau of prisons using the above address.


You can send an inmate funds electronically using MoneyGram's Express Payment Program.To send funds using this method, please read and follow these steps carefully:

  • Wait until an inmate has physically arrived at FCI Waseca.
  • Gather the information you'll need. Which includes the inmate’s name and number.
  • Visit moneygram.com to complete your payment.

Information needed to complete MoneyGram payment:

  • Account Number: Inmate's eight-digit register number with no spaces or dashes, followed immediately by the inmate's last name (example: 12345678DOE).
  • Company Name: Federal Bureau of Prisons
  • City & State: Washington, DC
  • Receive Code is always: 7932
  • Beneficiary: Inmate's full committed name

Western Union

If you would like to see a sample Western Union form click here. On their website, they have a special form for sending money to inmates, and you go directly to it by clicking here.

You will need to know the inmate’s full name and number, and you can pay with a debit or credit card at westernunion.com. Remember, any time you send money to an inmate you must always include their name and registration number on everything.

There are a few things that inmates can spend their money on. This includes phone calls, emails, and commissary.  The commissary is the prison store, where inmates can buy things like beverages, meals and snacks, OTC medications, stationary, personal hygiene items, clothing, or other miscellaneous products.

Please be aware that prisoners have their own economy inside the prison walls just like we do in the real world. Inmates that have a lot of money can do a lot of things both legal and illegal. Prisoners can potentially use the money in their account to buy things for other inmates in exchange for drugs and paraphernalia. This activity is illegal and can get an inmate in a lot of trouble.

Is important to keep track of how much money you are sending your incarcerated loved one, and watch out for any suspicious behavior.

​Programs For ​Inmates

  • Trauma and Life Workshop
  • Resolve (Trauma and Recovery)
  • Basic Cognitive Skills
  • Criminal Thinking
  • Emotional Self-Regulation
  • Drug education programs
  • Residential Drug Abuse Program (RDAP)
  • Non-Residential Drug Abuse Program (NR-DAP)
  • Literacy
  • English as a Second Language (ESL)
  • GED
  • High School Diploma (via paid correspondence)
  • Post-Secondary Programs (via paid correspondence)
  • Advanced occupational education in Business Office Specialist, Cosmetology, and PAWS Program (Prisoners Assisting with Service Dogs)
  • Vocational training in Horticulture and Woodworking
  • Apprenticeships in Landscape Technician
  • UNICOR facility that produces clothing and textiles
  • Fitness programs
  • Wellness programs
  • Community Flower Garden

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Careers at Federal Correctional Institution - Waseca

If you are interested in pursuing a career with the Federal Bureau of Prisons, you can find available positions at FCI Waseca by visiting USAJobs.gov. The salaries at the facility begin around $40,000 and can go up into the six-figure range, depending on the position.

Reviews from employees at FCI Waseca report that it is a great place to work and there are plenty of opportunities for advancement. The salary and benefits are average.