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  • Volunteer programs?

    Do being apart of volunteer programs help in the hiring process? For instance, the local pd in my city has a citizens academy that is an 11-week course about the department's function and operational methods. Also, the California military reserve is a volunteer operational force that assists the national guard.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Don951 View Post
    Do being apart of volunteer programs help in the hiring process? For instance, the local pd in my city has a citizens academy that is an 11-week course about the department's function and operational methods. Also, the California military reserve is a volunteer operational force that assists the national guard.
    Don, any legitimate volunteer work you do won't hurt. That said, you'll still need to test well in all phases of the hiring process. The volunteer work demonstrates your enthusiasm for and interest in law enforcement.

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    • #3
      In California, most civil service agencies score you solely on the number of correct answers you give to questions on the written and oral exams, so volunteer experience will not help in that respect. However, volunteering with a law enforcement agency may increase your knowledge of police work, allowing you to give more correct answers to the test questions.
      Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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      • #4
        Originally posted by morsey25
        Im from Minnesota and since its very competitive to get a law enforcement job around here any little bit that you can do to help you stick out from the crowd helps (ie volunteer, jobs dealing with crisis situations). Also since the current trend is community policing, getting involved in the community even before you get hired is a big plus. I would volunteer where you can, church, crisis shelter, etc. It doesnt hurt thats forsure.
        +1!
        "It's a long way from the Supreme Court to the streets." -F.Y.
        "Saw drunk, arrested same." -Buck

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        • #5
          Originally posted by L-1 View Post
          In California, most civil service agencies score you solely on the number of correct answers you give to questions on the written and oral exams, so volunteer experience will not help in that respect. However, volunteering with a law enforcement agency may increase your knowledge of police work, allowing you to give more correct answers to the test questions.
          When you say this, are you meaning that your resume is basically meaningless? I dont have a bad work history, but I am curious as I just sent in an PHQ for a volunteer program..

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          • #6
            Originally posted by lionheartednyhc View Post
            When you say this, are you meaning that your resume is basically meaningless? I dont have a bad work history, but I am curious as I just sent in an PHQ for a volunteer program..
            That's exactly what I am saying. There is no objective way to score your volunteer service against the next candidate's time in the rangers, versus another candidate's EMT certificate, or another candidate's degree in English. There are just too many experiences in life to accurately assign a point value to each one. So instead, civil service exams identify specific test questions and criteria that are clearly related to the job in question and scoring is limited to those areas alone.

            Because everyone is treated equally and judged (scored) by the same standards, you will find the civil service hiring process to be very structured and mechanical. Buried in fine print of most civil service exam announcements, you will usually find an explanation of how you will be scored. Most folks never read it and those that do, just don't pay attention.

            The exam announcement for each position will list minimum requirements for that particular job. They are usually things like 21 years old, high school diploma or GED, valid DL, US citizen, no felony convictions, etc. If you possess those minimum requirements, it guarantees your admission to the testing process. If you exceed them, it may make folks feel warm and fuzzy about you, but it doesn't give you extra points unless the exam announcement specifically says it does. For example, Veterans may get an extra 3 to 5 points added to their final score.

            If you read further in the exam announcement, it should tell you exactly how you will be scored. In some places the written is 60% of your score while the oral is 40%. In others its 50/50, or 60/40, yet in others the written may simply be pass/fail and the oral is 100% of your score. Those scores are traditionally based on the number of correct answers you give to the same job related questions that are asked of all candidates.

            The background is not an evaluation that is scored (good things do not make up for bad things here). It's purpose is to confirm that you possess the minimum requirements for the job and to determine if there is anything in your history that meets the criteria for DQ. So, all that time you spent volunteering to deliver meals on wheels won't cancel out those two DUI convictions three years ago.

            The ideas you have about making yourself a more attractive candidate are good for private business, where there are no standards and they can hire you simply because you made a good impression, or because they like you suit, or they know your uncle, or you remind the interviewer of their favorite movie star. But it is fairly meaningless when it comes to structured civil service testing.
            Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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            • #7
              You could try http://www.policevolunteers.org/

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