Citizen Police Academy

The next session of the Citizen Police Academy will begin Wednesday, February 21, 2024. Classes will be held on Wednesday nights from 6:30 P.M. to 9:30 P.M. Applications(PDF, 219KB) for this session are now being accepted!

What Is the Citizen Police Academy?

The Citizen Police Academy is a free community education program intended to build lasting relationships between program participants and the Columbus Division of Police, with the ultimate goal of reducing crime and achieving the best police service in the Columbus community. The program will give people an inside look at the values, philosophies, and operations of the Division, while at the same time serving as an open forum for questions, discussion, and the exchange of ideas. Both participants and Division personnel will be better able to dispel concerns and misconceptions, improving police and community rapport.

What Topics Are Covered?

Participants will have the opportunity to tour many of the Division facilities, which may include the Training Academy, Crime Lab, Heliport, SWAT Unit, Mounted Unit, and Radio Room. Subject-matter experts from all over the Division will provide instruction on topics such as the function of patrol officers, ABC's of policing, defensive tactics, internal affairs, and laws of arrest, search, and seizure. Participants will also learn about how individuals become police officers and about the on-going training that officers receive.

Sample Schedule

Week 1

  • 6:30P - 7:00P Welcome
  • 7:00P - 8:00P Program Overview
  • 8:00P - 9:30P Division Overview

Week 2

  • 6:30P - 8:30P Recruit Training
  • 8:30P - 9:30P Academy Tour

Week 3

  • 6:30P - 9:30P ABC's of Policing

Week 4

  • 6:30P - 9:30P Laws of Arrest, Search and Seizure

Week 5

  • 6:30P - 9:30P Defensive Tactics

Week 6

  • 6:30P - 9:30P Patrol Functions

Week 7

  • 6:30P - 8:00P K9 Unit
  • 8:00P - 9:30P Property Crimes

Week 8

  • 6:30P - 8:00P SWAT
  • 8:00P - 9:30P Mounted Unit

Week 9

  • 6:30P - 8:00P Heliport
  • 8:00P - 9:30P Internal Affairs

Week 10

  • 6:30P - 8:00P Radio Room
  • 8:00P - 9:30P Crime Lab

Week 11

  • 6:30P - 9:30P Alumni Night (Special Topic)

Week 12

  • 6:30P - 8:00P Law Enforcement & Stress
  • 8:00P - 9:30P Feedback

Graduation of Saturday week of 12

When Is the Academy?

The Citizen Police Academy runs for thirteen weeks and classes are held one evening a week for three hours. Classes will primarily convene at the Columbus Police Training Academy, and typically last from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Participation in the academy requires a substantial commitment, and any participant who misses more than two classes will not be able to graduate.

Who Can Apply?

Any member of the Columbus community who meets the following criteria:

  1. Must be a city resident, work in the city, own a business / property, or have other strong ties to the City of Columbus.
  2. Must be able to make a commitment to attend the twelve week course.
  3. Must be 18 years of age or older.

Who Will Not Be Considered?

  1. Individuals who have employment applications pending with a law enforcement agency (It is not the intent of the Citizen Police Academy to further the career choices of the participants).
  2. Individuals who are direct relatives of current police officers, living in the same household.
  3. Individuals with a known criminal history that include:
    1. Outstanding warrants.
    2. Any felony conviction.
    3. History of theft, public intoxication or repeated offenses.
    4. Convicted of violent misdemeanor offenses (i.e. domestic violence, assault, menacing).
    5. Subject of a protective order.
    6. Conviction of no operator's license or driving under suspension within the last two years.
  4. Individuals with extensive driving records will be evaluated to determine if their desire to attend conform to the goals of the Academy.
  5. Individuals living outside the Columbus city limits with no other ties to the city.

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity CommissionThe City of Columbus is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

To learn more about other job opportunities within Division of Police, please contact HR at (614) 645-4201.