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Apply now or later?


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  • Apply now or later?

    I have been considering a career in law enforcement for several years now. But not until recently have I begun to take the plunge and pursue this dream. Just a few days after I made this decision I saw my county posted a position for a police officer. I have not had the time I would like to prepare myself physically and study all that I would like to know before going into an interview. However, if this process is months-long, I am comfortable with my ability to learn as I go. First I’ll list my qualifications:

    B.S. in Psychology from private college. 3.67 GPA

    1.5 years working for a company contracted by a state agency. Experience working with the public and people with special needs. Very familiar with case documentation and government standards for paperwork.

    1 year living and working in a third-world country (high stress environment)

    Fully fluent in Spanish (Often mistaken as native speaker even though I did not study Spanish until HS)

    1 traffic violation in 2006 for reckless driving (inching over white line at red light). This was remedied through traffic school.

    Pulled over last month for failure to display registration stickers. No citation issued because registration was completed, but stickers had not been placed.

    No drug use ever

    Very mild tobacco and alcohol use (Once every 3 months)

    Good Credit with absolutely no debt

    In summation, is it better to apply when there is a definite opening or wait until I am completely comfortable with my level of preparedness? I have not been on a ride-along yet. Is there time between submitting the application and an interview, to complete a ride-along? How much time should I spend studying procedure to be competent in an interview? Will most departments make room for the right candidate, or do they only hire when there is a clearly vacant position?

    Thank you for any help you can offer.

  • #2

    Even if nothing comes of it you will have the experience of the application process.

    Competition is VERY strong in today's job market. VERY few people get hired at the 1st job they apply for -------most apply at 10-20 places before finding a fit.

    We highly recommend the "shotgun" method of applying everywhere there is an opening and hoping for the best.

    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


    • #3
      I would give you a look with what you've posted here. Go for it.

      I don't agree with your opinion, but I respect its straightforwardness in terms of wrongness.


      • #4
        Looks good to me too.
        I’ll die with blue in my veins.


        • #5
          Thank you so much for your responses. This is very encouraging. I'm going home tonight and will start looking at the paperwork and start a more rigorous fitness routine.


          • #6
            I would apply for whatever agency you are looking to work for.

            The only issue that you are going to encounter is the current state of hiring, which is miserable in most areas.

            This is not said to discourage you, because if what you posted is correct, you are a very viable applicant. It just may take more than a couple of applications before you get hired on with an agency.

            Good luck!
            The posts on this forum by this poster are of his personal opinion, and his personal opinion alone

            "Politicians are like diapers. They need to be changed often and for the same reason"

            "We fight not for glory; nor for wealth; nor honor, but only and alone we fight for freedom, which no good man surrenders but with his life"


            • #7
              Apply. Clean record, fluent in spanish, bachelors, all good things.

              Most people (around here anyway) don't have any experience before applying and going into the academy. I know I didn't.


              • #8
                By all means, apply.


                • #9
                  Thank you all again. I have begun the application and will submit it within the next couple of days. It's good to know that others did not have direct experience before being hired. I am trying to point out every possible skill I have on the application though.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Solo Sicarius View Post
                    Thank you all again. I have begun the application and will submit it within the next couple of days. It's good to know that others did not have direct experience before being hired. I am trying to point out every possible skill I have on the application though.
                    Be willing to relocate if at all possible. The department I work for is hiring alot, while others in other areas are laying people off.
                    Good luck!
                    Judge me by the enemies I have made----Unknown


                    • #11
                      Apply, and if you don't get it....apply again...or somewhere else.

                      I do have to call BS on your 2006 reckless driving ticket. I think there is more to the story than "inching over the white line." Tell the truth about this one when the BI inquires...it won't be a big deal if you do. If you lie....see ya.


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