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  • Introducing...

    I have been lurking here for a while and thought I would introduce myself. I am looking to get into LE from the IT field and I start at CCJLE end of August. This board is an excellent source of information! I especially like the way it is organized by state. One question I have is about police reserve positions. How difficult is it to get a police reserve position? What agencies would you recommend? How is police reserve experience viewed when applying to agencies for LE jobs? Any insights would be helpful. Thanks!

  • #2
    I don't know the first thing about being a police reserve, so I can't help you there.

    I would however encourage a ride-along w/different departments. Say for instance a suburban department, large city (Mpls or St Paul) maybe a county and the state patrol. That way you can see a fairly representative cross section of the police work here in MN.

    I would imagine that most would hesitate to recommend any departments as we don't know anything about you or what you are looking to get out of law enforcement. As far as recommending a department to reserve with, I would say go to your city of residence and start there.

    I don't think police reserve experience would hinder you when looking for a job, especially if it was the department for which you reserved. However, if you are a screw up (and i'm hoping you are not) then you may have issues. If you show the department you are responsible and dependable etc... I would imagine it would increase your chances of being hired.

    Hope this helps.

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    • #3
      I was a Reserve Officer among many other non-sworn positions. I highly recommend anyone wishing to become a sworn full-time officer to gain a position as a non-sworn officer. Being that of a reserve officer, community service officer, park agent, etc. The department is not as of much worry or weight as being emloyed in the actual position. If you have eyes on certain departments, apply to positions there. Your probability of being looked at by your future boss is very high. Therefore, impressing them may help you in your quest, however the quite opposite could be even more harmful.

      The positions are hard to come by, and there are interviews and other types of testing. However, the experience that you can gain from the position is invaluable. You have to know how to use it to your advantage in terms of contacts, networking, and using your skills gained from the position in an interview. I was a CSO (paid) and a Reserve (non-paid) so I could expand on the fact that not only did I volunteer for my community, but I also was a paid employee for another law enforcement agency.

      Especially in this hard state to be hired in, any type of experience that you can gain will be very beneficial if you choose to pursue a career in law enforcement. Many people go through skills, CCJLE, Alexandria, etc. and have a hard time getting hired not because they are not smart enough or that they could not do the job. However, they don't have that experience that a lot of law enforcement agencies look for because of the many non-sworn positions are out there. Having a department that highly recommends you to be a patrol officer to another department, or even their department, can be worth its weight in gold.

      K9

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      • #4
        what section are you in for ccjle?
        "No you got the wrong number, this is 91....2"

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        • #5
          Most agencies are always looking for police reserves. It does look good on a resume. I first started reserving at Robbinsdale, which led to a couple of other paying positions at the police department. I highly recommend reserving.

          Some agencies limit tasks of the reserve officers. At RPD, they allowed a lot more responsibilities. We did transports, vehicle impounds and the dreaded Animal control calls. But the officers were always thankful to have a reserve car on. Plus, some of the veterans on the reserves were extremely knowledgable about their position as a reserve and which officers liked what.... things always ran smoothly because they had their **** together.

          Good Luck.... I also have some inside information that their agency is (more recently) partial to hiring their CSO's and reserves.
          Oh... Oh... I know you di-int!

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          • #6
            Thanks to everyone for your replies! Great information! To answer a few of your questions...

            I believe I possess a good idea of what LE is like. In March I went on a ride along with a smaller department in the metro area. A number of years ago while attending college I worked as a security guard in downtown Minneapolis. On weekend nights we had an officer from the Minneapolis police "moonlighting" at our building to help us out. Talking and working with the officer gave me good insights into what police work is like. However, I will probably go on at least one more ride along with a large dept. in the metro.

            I don't think I am a screw up. In the last 7-1/2 years I have held 2 jobs in my current field (I left my first job voluntarily after 2-1/2 years, employed at my current job for 5 years), good credit history, never been arrested, no tickets/accidents in the last 6 years, 7 years military service (2-1/2 active and 4-1/2 years guard/reserve) with honorable discharges, and 2 associates degrees from non-LE studies (well, I have one class remaining on the second one...).

            What am I looking to get from LE? A career helping others and society. LE has always been on my list for career choices. Other things that attract me to this field are job security and the fact that it's not a regular 9-5 job. As far as specifics like what department I would like to work for, I simply have not yet decided.

            I start this fall at CCJLE in section 90.

            K9/Insane (or other reservists), how long did the selection process take (from application to "your hired!")? Once hired was the agency you reserved for willing to work with you on scheduling? One of my main concerns about reserving is scheduling since I work and go to school full time. If most of my availability was on the weekends, do you think that would be a problem for most agencies (of course, if an emergency arises and I am paged by the agency I would likely get time off from work).

            Thanks!

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            • #7
              Originally posted by computergeek
              What am I looking to get from LE? A career helping others and society. LE has always been on my list for career choices. Other things that attract me to this field are job security and the fact that it's not a regular 9-5 job.
              Ah yes, the intial reasons why I wanted this job. Amazing how things change over the years.

              K9

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              • #8
                Originally posted by computergeek
                K9/Insane (or other reservists), how long did the selection process take (from application to "your hired!")? Once hired was the agency you reserved for willing to work with you on scheduling? One of my main concerns about reserving is scheduling since I work and go to school full time. If most of my availability was on the weekends, do you think that would be a problem for most agencies (of course, if an emergency arises and I am paged by the agency I would likely get time off from work).
                Good questions, very hard to answer because reserves can vary greatly from department to department. Some have certain criteria you have to meet each month others don't. Some let you patrol whenever, some make you only do certain events. You could be hired in a month, or six months. From what I found, they are willing to work with your schedule because you are, after all, only a volunteer and they aren't paying you. They like to keep you happy. Availability on weekends would be a good thing, especially when festivals, parades, etc. are usually on weekends.

                Good questions to ask during a reserve interview!

                K9

                Comment

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