Citizen Police Academy
The application process for the 2013 Citizen's Academy has begun. Applications will be accepted until December 1, 2012.
What is the Academy?
The Madison Police Department Citizen's Academy is a program that is designed to give the public a working knowledge and understanding of the values, goals, objectives and operation of the City of Madison Police Department. The goal is to improve the lines of communication and help build a positive relationship between the Madison Police Department and the community members we serve. This will allow citizens to gain a deeper understanding of their police department and allow police to become more familiar with the citizens they serve. By working together with the public, we are better able to solve problems that face our community and improve the quality of life in the City of Madison.
This course is not intended for those wishing to explore or pursue a career in law enforcement, but to produce informed citizens.
The Academy consists of nine three-hour sessions conducted on a weekly basis. Classes will take place on Mondays from 6-9pm from January 28 through March 25. They will primarily take place at the MPD South Police District Station, located at 825 Hughes Place. At least two classes will occur at the MPD Training Center, located at 5702 Femrite Drive.
During the Academy, citizens will be exposed to subject matter relating to the duties and responsibilities of police officers. The Academy will be instructed by Police Officers and Supervisors from the Madison Police Department with expertise in various areas of law enforcement. Past topics have included drugs and gangs, a legal update, officer involved shootings and use of force decisionmaking, OWI and traffic enforcement, K9s and mounted patrol, crime scene investigation, crisis negotiations, Dane County Crime Response, child abuse/neglect, computer crimes and forensics and domestic preparedness. Academy participants will also be given the opportunity to go on a ride-along with a MPD police officer. The curriculum for the 2013 Academy has not been finalized.
During classes, participants are encouraged to ask questions and give feedback concerning the operation of the Police Department. Additionally, citizens bring a wealth of knowledge about their community, particularly the problems in their neighborhoods. In this way, members of the Department learn firsthand the concerns of its citizens by interacting with them in a positive, non-confrontational setting. It is our sincere hope that the well-informed graduates will become partners with us in identifying problems and providing solutions to quality of life issues that face our community.
Who can Attend?
- Citizens of the City of Madison who are at least 18 years of age
- Citizens with an interest in learning about their police department
- Citizens with no felony arrests or convictions (includes criminal traffic offenses)
- Must complete an application that is submitted by the deadline
- Must be willing to submit to a background check
- Must sign a waiver of liability that is submitted by the deadline
How to Apply
Applications and waivers are included on the Madison Police Department's website.
Applicants must print off a copy of both the application and waiver. Once both forms have been completed, they must be mailed to the Coordinator whose name and address appears at the bottom of the application or dropped off at one of the District Police Stations to be routed to the Coordinator. Both the application and waiver must be submitted. Applications will be accepted until the deadline date. Any applications received after the deadline will not be considered. Applications that are postmarked by the deadline and received after the date will still be accepted. Any applications and waivers that are submitted by email will not be accepted. No confirmation of receipt will be sent.
Once the deadline has passed, all applications and the designated criteria will be reviewed to determine a pool of candidates for the upcoming Academy. A background check will be conducted to eliminate those applicants with a criminal record. The remaining applications will then be screened to come up with a diverse group of citizens. All applicants will receive a letter from the Coordinator advising them of the outcome of the application process. The screening process may take up to six weeks after the deadline to complete. The target date for all letters to be sent out with results of the process is December 1.
The criteria for screening applicants will include (but not be limited to):
- City geographical areas (Districts)
- Distribution of Neighborhoods
- Diversity to reflect the community we serve (i.e. gender, race, age)
- Review of application
- Information obtained from background investigation
The maximum class size for the Citizen's Academy is 20. All accepted candidates will be contacted and provided more specific information regarding the Academy, including the location it will be held. The candidates must commit to attending all of the sessions. It is understood that emergencies will arise, but candidates must contact the Coordinator to inform her/him of the need to miss the session and the reason. Candidates will be advised that unexcused absences or too many absences will result in them being dropped from the Academy.
Any further questions can be directed to the Citizen Police Academy Coordinator.