With an action-packed work environment and dedication to serving the people, a career in law enforcement promises many things. A lot of us will agree to this because we grew up watching television shows with cops chasing criminals on the streets and investigating crimes. Some have already pursued this career and became successful officers. However, being a cop does not mean getting into the action and detective work right away. Those interested to forge their path in the law enforcement field must realize that being part of the force requires many hours of hard work and dedication.
A police officer is responsible for enforcing the laws of their respective country, serving their communities, and protecting property. Their responsibilities are diverse, which is why they undergo specialized training for their assigned duties. Fighting crime involves a vast scope such as day-to-day patrol, responding to suspicious drugs, and working with a SWAT team to raid in dangerous situations, among others. Once they are promoted, they can also aid in crime investigation.
The minimum requirement for application to law enforcement agencies is to be a legitimate citizen of your country and be at least 18 years old. Applicants must also possess a clean criminal record; only minor offenses are allowed. In terms of educational attainment, the minimum requirement for police officers is a high school diploma. Nowadays, however, most organizations prefer to hire people with college degrees especially for more advanced positions in the federal government including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and wildlife protection.
Once accepted, applicants will enter a police academy to learn more about the field. The academy will administer an entrance exam, and applicants must secure a passing score to proceed. The coverage of the exam varies among academies and their specific jurisdictions. Typically, the exam covers law enforcement, compass, and asset.
Successful examinees will start their training at their chosen police academy. The training will enable the applicants to learn the courses required to be part of law enforcement. The six-month training comprises of courses such as laws, physical training, driving, firearms, and many more. The academy will give the aspirants a taste of police work since they will be exposed to actual situations that law enforcement officers face daily in their careers.
After rigorous training at the police academy, they will be inducted as police officers through a special ceremony and assigned to their specific areas. While on the job, they will be assessed based on performance and amount of experience and check if these are worthy of a promotion. Once promoted to higher ranks, they will be assigned to supervise and guide new officers. Depending on the location’s cost of living, a police officer’s salary may vary, but the pay is generally considered high with many benefits.
The path to becoming a police officer may seem long and tedious for some, but at the end of the path lies a distinguished and respected career; essential for the protection of the people and observance of the law.