Learning how to become a cop is very difficult because police work is a way of life rather than a job. This is not the kind of job that you can get after getting your high school diploma. For anyone to be considered, he or she must have attained an associate's degree in criminal justice or a minimum or 40 to 60 credits. Those who have criminal convictions will never become cops. Every applicant must also pass a psychological exam that is issued by the police department.
If you decide that you want to become a police officer, you should start asking your local police officers about the entry requirements and what the job entails. You can also organize a date so that you can ride a long with them and get first hand experience of the job. You can ask them questions regarding the minimum requirements, application process scheduling of exams and tips on how to pass the exam. An interesting point to note is that when the city is recruiting, it normally accepts online applications apart from normal submissions.
Applications that are accepted are usually put on a waiting list. If you are better qualified for the job than other applicants, your name will appear on top of the list.
Prepare Yourself Physically and Mentally
The job description of a police officer is vast and the requirements for becoming one are many. The written exam is also very difficult and most applicants usually quit before they finish the test. However, you will have an easy time taking the exam if you prepare yourself properly. Once you have decided to apply for the job, you should visit your local police station and ask for study material. It is important to note that there will also be a physical exam. For you to pass this exam, you must exercise on a regular basis. The following are some physical requirements expected from every applicant:
- Run 2 to 3 miles covering each mile in less than 8 minutes.
- Do bench presses using weights equal to your body weight.
- Do 30 sit-ups and 20 pushups in less than one minute.
- Climb an 8-10 foot wall.
Furthermore, superiors believe that if police offices are going to carry stun and mace guns, they should understand how it feels to be shot by a stun gun or being maced. Police officers are also taught hand to hand combat to prepare them for eventualities on the street. This type of training can be life saving when on the field.
Police Officer Salary
After completion of training and passing of the written exam, you will graduate and be assigned to a precinct. Precincts that have higher crime rates usually pay officers higher salaries because of the risks involved in the job. On average, a police officer makes $50,000 annually with 2 to 5 weeks of paid vacation, holiday bonuses, bilingual bonuses, retirement packages and excellent health benefits.