Why Become a Police Officer?


There are many reasons for becoming a police officer, but perhaps the most compelling reasons are that the job allows a person to make a difference, to make a change, and to perhaps even save a life. When a person makes the decision to become a police officer it is not simply a job or a career, it is truly a way of life.


  • A career as a police officer has many advantages. A police officer's day is rarely routine. Some even call it adventurous, and that is an attraction for many who want to avoid a typical office job. Advantages include the challenges, the rewards from helping others, job security, prestige, the medical and other health benefits, and the pension.

Respect; Reward; Adventure; Pride

  • A police officer earns and enjoys respect and proud standing in a community. Children and adults often look up to a police office. It is an extremely rewarding career in that it allows a person to keep the public from harm and to keep the town safe. A police officer builds bonds with the community and its people. It is an ongoing learning experience and journey in life.

Education and Various Agencies

  • Requirements vary from agency to agency and offer many options to many individuals. There are several types of agencies such as local police, state police, sheriff's department, federal law enforcement, campus law enforcement and special police. A recruiter or an agency's website will list the requirements. Some will only hire high school graduates or applicants with a GED. Others require an associates or bachelor's degree. The more schooling you have, the more you are perceived as capable of dealing with the day-to-day challenges a police officer faces.

Application, Requirements and Testing; Academy Training

  • After you apply either in person, by phone or on a website, a packet of information will be sent to you. You are then notified of a date and time to report for the written exam. A physical abilities test and an oral interview usually follow. A psychological examination and thorough background check will also be conducted. Once hired, a person is then sent to a training academy. Some are live-in quarters and some are even out of state. Here a new hire learns about laws, self-defense, firearms, police procedures and many other things that cannot be classroom taught.

On The Job Bonding

  • A police officer is highly respected by many, feared by some, and hated by others. Since the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, police officers have found a renewed respect. It is a very challenging but equally rewarding position. It is an honor, a privilege, and an opportunity. The camaraderie among police officers is unique and steadfast.

Fun Fact

  • It has been said that police officers are called cops because New York City police officers once wore an 8 pointed copper star on their uniform and the nickname "cop" stuck. Others say it come from the first three letters of the description of a police officer: "Constable on Patrol."

Famous Police Officers

  • Movies, television shows and novels have made some fictional police officers extremely famous. Police officers do not do their jobs for the fame or the fortune, however; they do it for the people, their hometowns, and their country.

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