Why Become A Police Officer?
If a person watches enough police buddy movies, they will think police work is glamorous and fun. However police work is very far from glamorous, but it can be exciting. A police officer has a very tough job, where every day they know they may not go home to their family. So why would some-one be willing to put their lives on the line, every day? They certainly understand they will never get rich doing the job, but they do it anyway. Most police officers do the job, because they truly believe they are making a difference in their community, state and neighborhood, and all states need good officers.
Now if you are thinking about becoming a police officer in New Hampshire, you certainly would like to know what the future holds for job openings in New Hampshire. The good news is that it is estimated that growth for police departments in New Hampshire is expected to grow at 7%, with about 110 new jobs opening every year. The good news is that police officers in the state of New Hampshire make decent money, with the average salary of $51,000 not counting overtime. However as any good police officer will tell you, overtime is part of the job.
Now as one might guess, because of the good pay and prestige of being a police officer, there are certain basic minimum requirements all candidates must meet. First of all all applicants must be at least 18 years old. Second all applicants must be a United States citizen. Third all applicants must have decent vision and hearing. All applicants must have a high school diploma or GED. Now if a candidate has some college or degree that will give them an extra added bonus.
Now besides those minimum requirements listed above there are other things all candidates must meet as well. All applicants must pass a physical exam by a licensed doctor, to show that they are healthy enough to do the duties of a police officer, and make it through the academy. Second all applicants must pass a physical fitness exam, to show they are capable of making it through the police academy training. Third they must pass a drug screening to show there is no drug addictions, which could damage the integrity of the hiring department. Fourth they must pass a psychological examination, and this will show whether or not the candidate can handle the daily stress all police officers go through. It is often said that police officers routinely go from calm to panic in a matter of seconds.
Now if the candidate makes it through all of this, then they can expect to be the target of a very intense background investigation, which will include the suspects being fingerprinted. The fingerprints will let the investigator know if the candidate has a criminal history, and DUI record. All investigators will talk to family, friends, neighbors, references and even past employers to get an overview of whether or not the candidate is a good fit for their department or not. Now at this point, if the recruit is offered a job, they will have to go to a police academy.
Now the police academy is nothing fun, but it is hard work. From the moment that the recruit comes in, their world will change. The instructors are charged to make sure that all recruits go from raw recruits, to well trained police officers. There will be a lot of training that will go on, and recruits will be pushed harder then they have ever been pushed before. It is all necessary because a police officer’s job is really hard and they need the very best they can get. So in this section we are going to explore different training segments that the academy does offer.
Part of the training that takes place in the classroom is when the recruits are taught the criminal and traffic code for New Hampshire. The codes are vital for a recruit to learn, because they describe the elements that need to be present in order to charge the suspect with the crime. The code is commonly called the bible of police work. Now besides learning the codes for New Hampshire, they will also be taught the federal codes as well.
Now one of the hardest parts of training is the physical training, but very important to the safety of the police officer. As a recruit you will do more push ups, sit ups, jumping jacks, leg lifts, mountain climbers and running then you have ever done before. Why? Well police work is a very physical job. When suspects fight a police officer, or run from a police officer, the officer needs to be in shape to chase the suspect or fight off the suspect. Physical training teaches the recruit they can push through things they did not know they could.
Now besides those two training areas they will also be taught patrol functions. Patrol functions are essential to a police officer staying alive and safe. Patrol functions will teach things like proper radio communications, proper handcuffing techniques, proper way to handle domestic disturbances, how to secure a crime scene, how to do a proper building search, how to search a suspect for weapons and drugs, how to properly write a police report and even how to testify in court, plus other things. The purpose behind patrol functions is that officers will use these on a daily basis but they will not know how to do them unless taught.
Now there is two training’s that are very popular among all recruits. The first is firearms training. Now as everyone knows, police officers routinely carry firearms for their protection and those that they are protecting. However a lot of times those recruits have never handled a firearm so there is training that is essential for new officers. For one, all recruits have to be taught firearm safety, and that is done by the range instructor. Second they will be taught how to take their weapon apart and put it back together. They will also be taught gun retention, in case someone fights the officer and tries to take their gun away. Now besides all of that, they will be taught how to properly clean their gun to hopefully prevent misfires and gun jams. Even though they try to prevent gun jams the recruits will be taught how to clear gun jams, in the event they ever have one. They will also be taught combat shooting and marksmanship. However the most important thing that they will be taught is when to shoot or not to shoot.
Now another course of training that is loved by recruits is defensive driving. All officers know how to drive but to drive at a high rate of speed is something different. However all police officers will drive at a high rate of speed at some time. So the training will focus on teaching recruits how to drive at high rates of speed safely, when to pursue and when not to pursue, how to position their patrol vehicle on a traffic stop, for cover and they will also have to drive through an obstacle course at a high rate of speed.
All of this training is designed to make sure the recruit can handle themselves when they are police officers. After all the training all recruits will also have to take a written test to be certified and graduate the academy, but once they do then their career takes off. Once a recruit graduates the police academy, they have something to be truly proud of and something not everyone can do.
Now once a recruit graduates the police academy then they will go back to their police department and start the real work. Once they get back to the department they will be partnered up with a field training officer, who will teach them how to apply what they learned in the academy to the street. Now the field training officer is not just any officer, he is an officer who is certified to be a training officer. Now once the rookie officer gets off field training and can show what they can do, then there is huge opportunities that the rookie officer can shoot for. They can certainly try to move up the rank structure and they can even try to go into specialized units. What are specialized units? Units like homicide, narcotics, traffic, community policing, school resource officers, and on and on. The key thing is that if you a person wants to be a police officer in New Hampshire, this is the perfect time to do it. All police departments through the United States need quality officers and if you have integrity, work ethic, and want to be something you can be proud of, then apply to become a police officer in the State of New Hampshire.