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Pre-test blues


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  • Pre-test blues

    As a candidate for MANY departments right now, I am really excited to get started in LE. The thing is, I find it discouraging going into the written tests, seeing anywhere from 500-2000 people, and knowing that there are only 20-30 spots. I try to remind myself that probably a lot, maybe even the majority of them, have no business being LEOs with their backgrounds, but then that voice comes up and reminds me that even still, more than 30 have superb resumes ("Yeah, I did two tours in Afghanistan with the SEALs before I decided I wanted to be a cop..." "Oh, I just got tired of LAPD and decided I wanted to move to the East Coast," etc, etc) and I end up feeling like I have nothing to offer. Plus, no matter how much I've practiced, I cannot seem to get my written score past the mid-80s.

    The thing is, I've been working my butt off for this, I've been putting my nose to the grindstone at work, I have a college degree, I'm in great shape, and I have a completely clean record (never even tried illegal drugs once), so I have confidence that I can be a good candidate, but there's always that lingering doubt.

    Anyone else go through this on their way to successfully becoming an officer? Or did most of you go in feeling like "Yeah, I've got this in the bag"?
    Last edited by GangGreen712; 09-16-2009, 09:35 PM.
    "If the police have to come get you, they're bringing an @$$ kicking with them!"
    -Chris Rock

  • #2
    Don 't stress it. Sometimes that Navy SEAL might be the worst candidate that the department is looking for. They are not always going to hire the military special ops guy that can kill you 14 different ways with one hand.

    They will hire the elementary school teacher with no experience or the IT guy that is tired of the corporate scene. LE is probably one of the most diverse work fields as far as back grounds go. Sure there will always be guys like me who have always wanted to be a cop and only have done cop/military related work. But LE needs a diverse force that includes women, minorities, and people from all over the world with a wide variety of skills.

    So that poster Navy SEAL might not have as good as chance as he thinks he does.


    • #3
      Wirefire2 is right. Military/combat experience can be helpful, but it's by no means the only thing that police departments look for. I work with people with very diverse backgrounds and educational histories.

      I got discouraged a few times when I'd go in for a test and see how many people were there. Just remember that about half will fail the written and half of those who pass will fail the physical. So rather than 1000 people trying for 20 spots, it's more like 250. Still not great odds, I know, but better!
      "The sheep generally do not like the sheepdog. He looks a lot like the wolf. He has fangs and the capacity for violence. The difference, though, is that the sheepdog must not, can not and will not ever harm the sheep." -Lt. Col. Dave Grossman


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