Police Cadet Programs

What are Police Cadet Programs?

police cadet programCadet Corps is a law enforcement apprenticeship program that offers training and varied work assignments to persons between the ages of 18 and 21 (although age requirements may vary from department to department.) The Cadet Corps provides qualified men and women with a chance to experience the challenges and personal rewards of a police career. Often cadets are paid, and some programs are full time while others are part time, requiring participants to be attending college. Some cadet programs are unpaid and more similar to a police explorer program. Cadets are rotated thorough a variety of divisions to provide exposure to many aspects of law enforcement.

Cadets receive training and may work in varying assignments including:

  • Automobile removal
  • Communications
  • Community policing
  • Fingerprinting
  • Photo lab
  • Recruitment and training
  • Traffic
  • Youth services

Upon completion of a cadet program, with additional testing, some programs elevate cadets into the role of police officer; others may prepare graduates for testing for the position of police officer.

Those interested in participating in a police cadet programs should contact police departments in their area to determine which departments offer a cadet program.

What is the difference between Police Explorers, Police Cadets, Police Reserves and Auxiliary?

While the following descriptions generally apply, programs may vary greatly from department to department. These difference may include the ages for participation as well as the role and functions of participants.

Law Enforcement Exploring

is a program designed to give insight into law enforcements careers for young men and women aged 14 – 20 through hands-on activities. Exploring is a volunteer program.

Police Cadets

is a law enforcement apprenticeship program designed to provide persons aged 18 to 21 a chance to experience the challenges and rewards of a police career. Often cadets are paid and work part or full time. Cadet programs are designed to assist cadets in transitioning into the position of full time police officer.

Police Reserve Officers

are volunteers that have extensive training and perform a variety of police functions and often have arrest authority and are armed. Age requirements are often the same as those for police officer.

Police Auxiliary

are volunteers who, depending upon the department, may perform a role similar to that of Reserve Officers, or may perform non-enforcement and non-hazardous duties. Age requirements may vary.