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  • Just Sworn In ...

    So here I go. I put myself through the academy. I graduated a few weeks ago. I applied to my dream department (good pay, good equip, good people, and I grew up there). I was sworn in a day ago. I go in Monday morning to pick up my uniform and equipment. Next week I start FTO.

    Any advice? Anything you wish someone would have told you back then?

    It's all sort of surreal. I mean it seems like a second ago I was discouraged thinking "They're not even going to call me back I bet" or "Oh man I hope I passed that psych". Now suddenly I have a badge number and a huge book of procedures and policies I get to spend the weekend reading. It still hasn't sunk in yet. I've done dozens of ride alongs on the weekends during the academy. I hate to sound week, but I am definitely a bit scared. Not of injury or death, but of screwing up etc.

    Anyways, just wanted to vent, and get that out. Haven't told anyone but my immediate family yet. Wanted to wait until Monday morning when I get all geared up (they take a pic for my photo ID) and then tell my friends and more distant relatives. So I really needed to just sort of get this off my chest and "tell the world" so to say. I'm so happy it's hard to hold this great news in for a few more days.

  • #2
    Congratulations !! You are now part of a brotherhood of police. Advice, stay safe, pay attention and learn from your FTO, put your safety and that of your partner first at all times, remember the saying "I'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6"
    law dog

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    • #3
      Congrats and welcome to the club. Let us know when you're off FTO so we can get you the secret decoder ring too.
      Originally posted by kontemplerande
      Without Germany, you would not have won World War 2.

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      • #4
        LMAO !!! Awesome. Do I have to buy a box of cereal to get it? haha

        Thanks guys. I am very happy to finally be a part of the family.

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        • #5
          Congrats, well first what you learned in the academy was just basic principles. The academy may have said do it like this but your department may have a different procedure just go with the flow. Also learn from your fto's but don't pick up any bad habits they may have.

          Also don't be scared or too big of a man to use backup there will be stops where you get a weird feeling. Also when your off the clock be off the clock keeps you from getting stressed out and burned out. But don't lose your safety mindset and carry a weapon if possible.
          Where'd you learn that, Cheech? Drug school?

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          • #6
            Learn all you can during the FTO period. The best way to do that is to keep your eyes open and your mouth shut, except to ask questions. You will have no better opportunity to learn than the FTO period.

            And when it comes to questions, ask a lot of them of your FTO. If you don't understand something, DO NOT let it go bye. Ask, Ask, Ask! Before I was a supervisor I was an FTO. Nothing is more frustrating than thinking the new guy understands something I explained, only to learn days/weeks later that he didn't.

            "Why didn't you ask me to explain last week, when we covered this?"

            Remember, your FTO is your supervisor, not your partner. You may become friends later, not now. Now is for learning.
            You can now follow me on twitter.

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            • #7
              Amazing advice guys. That's the stuff I am looking for. Thanks a lot!

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              • #8
                Let me reiterate the keep your mouth shut part. I'm a rookie too, about 9 months on now. I didn't learn that early on, and it caused some early friction because I was one of those "mouthy rookies".

                Needless to day, my FTO was extended, and I was paired with a 20+ year vet, who's first act was to proverbially cuff me upside the head and have a little "Come to Jesus" meeting with me.

                It worked, I pulled my head out of my @ss, and things are fantastic now. But your partners will truly become your family, and until you are included into that family, you have to be a fly on the wall.
                Invisible cows control my mind.

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                • #9
                  Philip:

                  Thanks for the back up.

                  It probably means more to him coming from you than it does coming from me, the salty old guy, because you were recently in that situation.
                  You can now follow me on twitter.

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                  • #10
                    Welcome to the greatest job in the world. Keep your ears and eyes open and stay safe!
                    RIP Sgt. Henry Prendes...EOW 2/1/06
                    RIP Off. James Manor...EOW 5/7/09
                    RIP Ofc. Milburn "Millie" Beitel...EOW 10/7/09
                    RIP Ofc. Trevor Nettleton...EOW 11/19/09
                    RIP Ofc. Daniel Leach...EOW 11/21/09

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by SlowDownThere View Post
                      Philip:

                      Thanks for the back up.

                      It probably means more to him coming from you than it does coming from me, the salty old guy, because you were recently in that situation.
                      LoL at "Salty old guy"!

                      Well, my salty old FTO is has now been my salty old partner for the last few months, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

                      Not a day goes by that we don't go on a call together where when we get done, I'm not standing there scratching my head and thinking, "How in the hell did he think of that?" and making more mental notes.
                      Invisible cows control my mind.

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                      • #12
                        Being an FTO myself the best advice I can give you is come to work with humility and leave your ego at home. FTO is for learning how to apply your academy skills to the real world not showing off. Ask questions and don't let mistakes drag you down. Learn from them and move on. You FTO will nitpick and probably anger you from time to time. Just remember he's trying to give you the best chance to stay alive in the field. You may be in training but his life is in your hands as much as your life in in his.

                        With that being said, enjoy the work. I still love going to work every day. This is the coolest job ever

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                        • #13
                          Congrats, Welcome and Good Luck! Make sure to keep your eyes and ears open. If there is a question on your mind, don't be afraid to ask! Make sure you pay full attention to what your being taught. Defintely keep the ego in check and always continue to learn, whether its reviewing your statute book or reading more information online. Also, don't be afraid to ask other fellow officers around the department for advice.

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