Cadet training introduces police work

Police officer helps young people learn about possible careers in law enforcement

HANCOCK — Melissa Hetrick, a Hancock police officer, spent some time last year as an advisor at the N.H. Police Cadet Training Academy, and she’s planning to do it again.

“It’s a wonderful program that aims to get young people familiar with police work, and it’s also about building skills they’ll need for leadership in everyday life,” Hetrick said recently. “It was very rewarding last year, seeing the great changes that occurred during the week.”

The academy is a week-long overnight program for teenagers and young adults between the ages of 14 and 20. It’s held at the N.H. Technical Institute in Concord, and this year will run from June 21 to June 27.

Hetrick described the academy as a military style program that’s physically demanding but also highly team-based, making it a great way for participants to develop structure and self-esteem.

“For anyone interested in a career either in law enforcement or the military, this is a great stepping stone,” said Hetrick.

Savannah Patten from Hancock, who attended the academy last year, says the experience was both challenging and rewarding.

“The N.H. Police Cadet Training Academy taught me more about myself, and the people around me, in one week than anything else ever has,” Patten wrote in an e-mail to the Ledger-Transcript. “Not only did it teach me how to fully respect others as equals but it taught me that I could hold myself to a higher level of respect as well. The academy pushed me to my limits and in doing so I found out just how far I could physically and mentally go, and for being a freshman in college, it was a lot further than I anticipated. Whether you have any interest in going into law enforcement at all, I would highly recommend taking part in the N.H. Police Cadet Training Academy because you will learn things about yourself within the first couple hours that you would have never known otherwise.”

Tuition to the academy is $150, and 100 cadets will be accepted into the basic session for new cadets. Advanced sessions and leadership sessions are also held for cadets who have previously attended, but those have already been filled for this year.

Applications may be found online at www.nechiefsofpolice.com. And Hetrick urges anyone interested learning more about the program to contact her at the Hancock Police Department or by e-mail at Hetrick@hancocknh.org.

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