BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (21Alive) -- Indiana University campuses around the state will add new cadet officers to their IU Police Department ranks after the IU Police Academy presented badges to 38 members of its 42nd class. Noreen Henriquez of Fort Wayne and Daniela Thomas of Uniondale were among that list.
Graduation ceremonies took place Aug. 10 in the Indiana Memorial Union's Alumni Hall in Bloomington.
The graduating cadet officers were selected from nearly 100 applicants and represent six IU campuses, the most in the academy's history. The new grads will join IU Police Departments on their home campuses this fall.
IU Bloomington will have 27 new cadet officers, Henriquez and Thomas are assigned there, IUPUI will have four, IU Northwest, IU East and IU Kokomo each will have two and IU Southeast will have one.
"This is the first time we've had cadets come to the IU Police Academy from so many campuses," said Lt. Greg Butler, director of the training division for the IU Police Department and a member of the academy's first class. "And it looks as if this will be the way of the future, since we've identified new cadets for the next class from all but one campus."
During the ceremony, five new officers were presented their badges by family members who were past graduates of the IU Police Academy.
Graduates of the 2013 academy session have completed several hundred hours of training over 14 weeks on their way to becoming fully certified police officers in the state of Indiana.
IU students interested in law enforcement apply for IU Police Academy, usually during their sophomore year after they have established themselves academically, although juniors can apply as well. Students must be enrolled full time at IU, and while most are criminal justice majors, any course of study is accepted.
Successful applicants are involved in extracurricular activities and demonstrate leadership abilities and other traits outstanding police officers should have. Scholarship athletes, biology majors, music majors, cheerleaders and even an IU homecoming queen have graduated from the IU Police Academy.
Students accepted attend an initial training class in Bloomington during August before their next academic year, known as their cadet year. In addition to attending regular full-time IU classes, the students are paid to work about 20 hours per week during their cadet year performing basic tasks, and they are required to stay on the Bloomington campus the following summer for intensive IU Police Academy training.
"As far as we know from interacting with a lot of other universities, especially those in the Big Ten, our program is the only one of its kind," Butler said. "What makes it unique is that these college students can get a Police Officer Certification by a state-authorized academy, and then work as a police officer with full arrest powers, part time, while attending school full time. When they graduate from IU, they have a college degree, Indiana Law Enforcement Certification and that valuable commodity called job experience."
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