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  • Certifying myself...

    Hello ALL!

    I am in the process of going through the Police Academy in Wisconsin. I have an interview with a panel of CJ professionals next week (hopefully, providing I am selected for an interview.) Anyway's, I am just wondering if you LEO's think it's worth it to go this route? It seems like MOST of the PD's in WI want you to already be certified. At least the smaller ones anyways. The only problem that I can forsee is getting certified (self-sponsorship) and then having a hard time getting hired by a PD. I know that the certifications only last 2 years, so this kind of worries me. Has any of the LEO's on this board done the self-sponsorship thing? As far as qualifications go, I don't think I will have a problem with that. I just recently graduated from a UW College (University of Wisconsin school) with a B.A. in CJ and a 3.2 GPA. I also did a 208 hour Intership with a local PD where I received an "A". I also have a lot of recommendations from there. If any of you could give me your thoughts on this, that would be great. I'd just like to do everything possible to help myself get onto a police department. I'm thinking that by certifying myself, it might give me a little more flexibility in choosing where I'd ideally like to work.

    Thanks much,
    Jeff

  • #2
    First off, if you can put yourself through the academy, it will greatly expand your job opportunities. The vast majority of Wisconsin deparmtents want officer who are certifiable before you arrive. Very few will send you to the academy anymore.

    Second thing, you are not certified as an officer until you are hired by a department. You are eligible for certification for a period of 2 years following successful completion of the academy. I know thats a bit of a semantics issue, but let's be technically correct.

    Finally, getting hired can be challenging. However, with good credentials and background, getting hired within two years should not be a problem AT ALL. Good luck!
    \

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    • #3
      I went through an "open enrollment" academy without a department sponsor. The competition is Ohio was absolutely cutthroat at the time (late 90's), and most departments wouldn't even consider you without an academy certificate in-hand. While the certificate definitely opened up opportunities, it wasn't (and, I suspect, still isn't) a sure-thing in hiring.

      As for your worries about not finding a job in time, I'd recommend getting a part time or reserve position while you're looking for full time. Not only does is take care of issues about your certification lapsing, it gives you valuable experience.
      "He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."
      -Friedrich Nietzsche

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      • #4
        Certifying myself

        My normal advice is that self-certification can be a bit risky. By that I mean that at the completion of the "Academy" you've paid for, and put yourself through, there is no gurantee of employment. What emerges from your post, and those of a few more Wisconsin folks, is that most agencies want applicants already certification eligible. In that event, it sounds like you made the right decision. Your GPA and internship look good, and should be pluses as you move through the hiring process. Good luck on the upcoming interview.

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        • #5
          i'd say ther'es nothing wrong with it, esp if you're interested in smaller agencies in wisconsin... i mean if they are looking for academy trained officers then you'll be a shoe in.

          i went the same route... but was eventually picked up and sponsored through the rest of the academy.

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