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  • How can I become competitive?

    Hello,

    Currently I am only a junior in high school. However, I have wanted to become a police officer for my career in the future since I was around 9 to 10 years old. I don't have any criminal record whatsoever, which can be expected due to my young age.
    However,my question to this community is that since police jobs have been becoming more and more competitive. How can I ensure that I am a good choice when I do eventually apply for a police officer position?

    I understand that I am young, however from discussing the question with local police officers they said it'd be best to start thinking about the career while your young.
    I am currently volunteering with the local first aid squad to get some experience in first aid which I feel could be beneficial in the field. I'm planning to go to college and get a bachelors degree in Criminal Justice as well. I also plan to volunteer at the police station based around the college that I choose. There is no junior police program in my town, if there was I'd gladly join.

    Do you have any recommendations to further myself for this career, other then what I have been doing already?

    Thank you for your time.

    -Casey

  • #2
    Stay out of trouble and mature a lot. Don't get impatient, don't hang out with people who will get you in trouble, don't get yourself in trouble, stay in shape, pay your bills, go to college/join the military, and most importantly, don't make stupid decisions you can't rationally explain later in your life.

    Covman

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    • #3
      do exactly as you have outlined with one exception

      STRONGLY reconsider your major. Get a Criminal Justice Degree ONLY if that is what you want to study. It is a good degree (unlike what some will say on here) and one that you CAN get a job with in other areas of LE besides being a cop. But the degree does limit your options if you ever decide the career just isn't for you.

      Consider another major , but if that is what you really want to study----------do so


      There ARE literally hundreds of jobs that a CJ degree will HELP you with ---------but basic Street Law Enforcement isn't one of them.
      Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

      My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

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      • #4
        Make good decisions and enjoy being a kid.

        While some departments may allow civilian volunteers to come in and help out, that has never been the case at any dept. I have worked for. I would hope that a college student could find something more constructive to do with their time than hanging out at the local PD.

        Take writing classes. Take public speaking classes. Try to learn the/a foreign language that is spoken in the jurisdiction you want to work in. A lot of departments are civil service, so you need to be a good test taker; if you can't score well enough on the civil service test, nothing else will matter.

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        • #5
          Stay out of trouble and finish school.Volunteer your extra time when possible. Do some ride alongs and ask questions about the position you want to be in.
          sigpic

          "When a police officer is killed, it's not an agency that loses an officer, it's an entire nation." -Chris Cosgriff, ODMP Founder

          http://www.odmp.org/

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          • #6
            A 2nd language would most definitely help you spanish being main one
            sigpic

            "When a police officer is killed, it's not an agency that loses an officer, it's an entire nation." -Chris Cosgriff, ODMP Founder

            http://www.odmp.org/

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            • #7
              Originally posted by wutzcrack3n View Post
              A 2nd language would most definitely help you spanish being main one
              Haha this is a good one. I can't say I've had much use for le français since I got on.

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              • #8
                Most things have been stated already, but I will reiterate to stay out of trouble. Do not hang out with people that will jeopardize your possible future career. One small slip up where you may think you'll never get caught can ruin your chances forever.

                That being said, just keep your head on straight and focus on what you need to do. Go to college/join the military. Both will offer you much experience that is invaluable to growing up. Many will bash CRJ as a degree. Do what you are interested in doing, but realize that a CRJ will not help much for a basic LE patrol job.

                I know some things have been restated, but these are the most important to consider if you want to get into this field. Good luck.

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                • #9
                  I want to second what Iowa and watzcrak3n both said:

                  Please re-consider your college major. That police science/ad-jus/criminal justice degree will do you absolutely NO GOOD, for a couple of reasons. For some reason, you change your mind or you get hurt requiring you change career choices. Four years of police-related studies might not help you transition into another career. BUT, here's the other deal. Many police academies actually GIVE college credit while you go through. I had the majority of police science credits for my AA degree when I entered the LAPD academy. They announced we'd get college credit through the Cal State system...with the exception being IF WE ALREADY HAD the credits we count NOT get them. Had I chosen any other path in college, I would have gotten the credits. Of course, your mileage may vary, I don't know what state you live in, or what agency you're drifting toward. You may wish to investigate what your dream agency does in conjunction with local colleges in regards to college credit.

                  A second USEFUL language will propel you to the front of the hiring pool. Again, I don't know where you live, or where you hope to work but I would look into which second languages are needed in that area. In Los Angeles, in the last division I worked, I could blindfold myself, toss a rubber ball backwards, have it bounce off four walls, go down a staircase, into a locker room and hit a Korean speaking officer at some point. Here, in Colorado, there's ONE Korean speaking cop for the ENTIRE state. There are a boatload of Russians here in Colorado, as well. A Russian speaking cop would likely get moved to the front of the hiring line in Denver.

                  Of course, stay out of trouble, get and stay in shape, and treat other people like they will someday be asked all about you, because they likely will.
                  Last edited by Kieth M.; 11-28-2014, 09:33 AM.
                  "You're never fully dressed without a smile."

                  Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

                  Three things I know for sure: (1) No bad deed goes unrewarded, (2) No good deed goes unpunished, and (3) It is entirely possible to push the most devoted, loyal and caring person beyond the point where they no longer give a 5h!t.

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                  • #10
                    Take courses or major/minor in courses such as Journalism, Lit, or similar that involve writing skills and reading comprehension. It's a whole lot easier to teach someone LE skills who already knows how to write and understand what is written than it is to teach a cop how to read and write. If you have good reading comprehension skills and the ability to write effectively then learning LE skills will be easy and you should become an effective and successful LEO. But if you can't write effectively or read and comprehend in-depth material then it doesn't matter if you know LE topics. You'll be another guy riding the road and pounding the pavement wondering why you can't get cases prosecuted or advance into LE jobs you desire.
                    183 FBINA

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                    • #11
                      I got in an auxiliary at age 27. Stretch Department mowed the parks, dispatched then went on the road. I am now 29 years in. I am a detective, I am major crimes, I am the dept latent examiner and a court appointed latent expert. I can hang a picture straight too. I run the processing lab and read and do reports on at least 3000 patents a year.
                      ADVICE:
                      1. Take typing/keyboarding. Get fast.
                      2. Take any advanced English class for the millions of line of reports coming for a career LEO.
                      3. You will need business classes to understand how it works.

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                      • #12
                        No one gives a second glance to ANOTHER CJ major. A second language makes you stand out. Learn what the major foreign language in your area is, its typically Spanish but if you have a large refugee population from somewhere it may be something a bit more obscure. Learn that language and learn it well.
                        I miss you, Dave.
                        http://www.odmp.org/officer/20669-of...david-s.-moore

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