MEDICINE HAT, AB — The 11 aspiring police officers in the cadet training program with the Medicine Hat Police Service have reached the halfway mark.
The cadets are in the 10th week of the program and have learned a variety of skills which will help them in their policing careers.
“They start off learning very basics of policing,” said Insp. Brent Secondiak. “So customer service was a focus to start off and then basics of criminal law and traffic law. And as the programs progressed, each part of it becomes more and more comprehensive.”
“We just finished our course that focuses on property offences,” said Sgt. Rod Thompson, who oversees the program. “We’ve done a lot of role playing, spent a lot of time in the classroom and now we get to demonstrate the competencies that we’ve focused on.”
On Monday, the cadets were assessed on a mock theft scenario. Thompson speaks about the scenario below.
“We have Lethbridge College that comes down and they bring some professional actors with them, just to add to the realism,” Thompson added. “We’ve got a couple of other interesting twists that we’ve added to it just to increase the complexity.”
“We end up getting inside our own heads a little bit, forget some of those simple things and afterwards it kind of makes sense, like ‘oh, yeah, I forgot about that or I didn’t do that,” said cadet Mark Parsons.
“Officer safety is a big one and just always being aware of your surroundings,” said cadet Lisa Gervais.
The cadets were graded on the assessment. Thompson said they’re looking for a few key qualities.
“Some of the biggest ones are being able to problem solve, interactive communication and the ability to deal with stress,” he said.
The 20 week program has proved to be a challenge for the cadets.
“One of the surprises, maybe, was just the work load,” Gervais said. “There’s a lot to do, a lot to know. A lot of studying and just finding a rhythm and routine for myself, school and my family life.”
Brian Plume, a cadet with the Blood Tribe Police, said it hasn’t been easy being away from his home and his wife.
“We’ve had ups and down and challenges but just pulled together as a group, the cadets are leaning on each other, making it a lot more easier,” he said.
The cadets will continue to work as a team and use that momentum to help get them through the final 10 weeks.
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