Armed with knowledge and the ammunition they need to put their plans into action, Jefferson High School students Abby Scott, Michael Neuberger, Amber Petoletti, Shane Lockhart and Luke Owens might possibly be serving and protecting the local citizens in the near future. The Jefferson teens, along with 28 other students from area schools, participated in a Mini Police Academy Job Shadow coordinated through Workplace Learning Connection (WLC). Abby, Michael, and Amber shadowed at the Cedar Rapids Police Department while Shane and Luke shadowed at the Marion Police Department.
First, the students got a tour of facility. Then, the students learned about squad cars, weaponry, protective clothing, the processes of disarming a suspect and the skills a law enforcement officer uses to defuse a difficult situation. A few students put on some of the equipment which weighs between 65-85 pounds – the vest alone was 35 pounds.
The K-9 Handler officers gave a demonstration with their canines. Students learned that the police dogs are an expensive yet important part of the drug and bomb squad.
At the CRPD, the students were shown defensive moves or moves you would use when you needed compliance. They were told not to use these at home! The officer gave specific examples of when they would employ these and when he has used them successfully in real life.
All in all, the days were successful learning experiences for the Jefferson HS teens. The Cedar Rapids Community School District partners with WLC to support career education goals to meet 21st Century Skills. WLC believes in a vibrant community with a workforce ready for a changing world, and supports the next generation as they navigate and connect to our shared future. This way, today’s Jefferson students are connected to tomorrow’s careers. For more information on how to get involved, contact Mr. Collins at the high school or go to www.workplace-learning.org.