Los Angeles Police Officer Salary And Job Outlook
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that as of 2015, the average salary for Los Angeles police officers was $96,810.2 The base salary for LAPD recruits with a high school diploma is $59,717.3 Pay begins the first day of police academy training. After completion of the academy, officers receive a salary increase to $62,974 after completing a probationary period, officers are promoted to the rank of Police Officer II, with a base salary of $67,505.3 Officers promoted to the rank of Police Officer II who hold an associates degree receive a higher base salary of $70,136.3 Officers may receive further salary increases based on longevity, special assignment, or promotion in rank. All officers are eligible for health and life insurance benefits, paid time off, and the citys pension plan.
Preparing For A Police Officer Career: Find The Right Environment
When an aspiring police officer chooses to go to school to obtain formal education, a world of possibilities opens up. Here are some of the potential places where the certificate or degree can be earned.
Some vocational or trade schools have certificate programs that may count towards college credit, such as for a future associate or bachelors degree. Some might offer associate degrees. Vocational or trade schools can provide a way to save money on college costs while receiving necessary college course instruction.
Military experience is well regarded by law enforcement agencies and police departments. Familiarity with firearms, mental toughness, physical conditioning, discipline and an understanding of command structure and culture are all benefits that come with hiring a recruit with military experience.
Community colleges provide multiple options for students who want to become police officers. Students can complete their associate degree in two years or a certificate in a few months. As an added bonus, many community colleges allow credits earned in a certificate program to go towards an associate degree.
Law Enforcement School
Departments that require a bachelors degree are often found at the federal level. However, even if a four-year degree isnt required, getting a bachelors degree can be a prudent decision: it can increase the chances of getting hired and promoted.
How Do I Make Myself More Marketable
California is a highly desirable state to work in, so it doesnt hurt to stick out from the bunch. Having an associates degree in Criminal Justice can be highly beneficial. If you dont have that, it doesnt hurt to take some criminology classes to boost your knowledge and expertise. Are you bilingual? Awesome! Many police agencies in the Golden State are searching for candidates who can speak in other languages in addition to English particularly Spanish.
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Picking The Right Program
Once you know which program level you want to pursue, its time to figure out which one best suits your needs. When researching the schools that make it onto your all-important shortlist, keep the following questions in mind:
- Is the school regionally accredited?
- Can you afford the tuition?
- Does the timeline fit with your future goals?
- Does the program have a high success rate?
- Does the program provide POST exam prep?
Police Officer Hours And Work Environment
Work hours can vary depending on the police department. Arlington County police officers are assigned to one of three eight-hour shifts, while police stations in smaller communities may only have two 12-hour shifts, Vincent says.
However, We offer an opportunity twice a year for officers to change shifts, Vincent says. Thats our system because research shows that poor sleep patterns can affect job performance. For that reason, police officers also usually have the same days off every week, Vincent says: Weve found that some officers prefer the midnight shift because theyre night owls.
As for the work environment, Vincent says theres inherent stress in any public safety job: And on top of being physically demanding, police work can be stressful and dangerouspolice officers may suffer physical injuries during conflicts and other high-risk situations. Therefore, officers must possess the physical and mental stamina to perform their job.
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You’re Only As Old As You Feel
You might be surprised by the answers you get if you ask different law enforcement officers about their backgrounds and what they did before they became police officers. Different people with different backgrounds join the force, and you’ll learn that they found their way to this profession at different stages of life…some of them later than others.
Not all police departments have maximum age requirements.
How Does Police Academy Training Work
No matter which program you choose, before beginning work at a police department, you will have to enter a police academy for formal training. This training will consist of various elements that prepare you for life as a police officer, including training it the classroom, field training that walks you through the rigors of the day-to-day work, and in-service training that allows you to begin working with the public on a probationary basis. Heres more about police academy training:
The classroom curriculum will focus on a variety of subjects, ranging from the law itself to administrative and department procedures. Cadets will also learn not just what the law is, but how to apply it in the real world. For example, a police officer may know that probable cause is required for a warrant to conduct a search, but what about the exceptions where a warrant isnt needed? Or what should the officer do or say if an individual contests the validity of the warrant? Much of this classroom training will be necessary before field training can take place or to put the hands-on skills into context.
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Get Accepted & Paying Your Way
Admission requirements can vary widely depending on the type of program and institution offering it. Another consideration is how to pay for this education and training. During your application process, keep the following pointers in the back of your mind to help you get into the best program to meet your needs and goals as a future police officer.
Entry into various degree programs in law enforcement will all require some general points, such as completing an application, paying an application fee and presenting proof of high school graduation.
The associate degree program might require:
- A personal statement
- Transcripts from any other college courses taken
The bachelors degree might require additional information:
- An essay
- Transcripts from associate degree work
- Completion of certain prerequisites
- A resume of related experience
Application process & fees
Paying for Your Program
How much a training or educational program costs depends greatly upon the degree level you want to obtain. For instance, obtaining an associate degree will cost much less than a bachelors degree will. To learn more about financial aid options and how those will affect your financial bottom line, visit our online financial aid handbook:
How To Find A Police Officer Job
As for where the jobs are, according to the BLS, these are the top five states with the most job openings. Click through to find job opportunities on Monster:
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Key Skills You Need To Be A Police Officer
Career and Entrepreneurship Expert
Deciding to become a police officer is a career choice that should not be taken lightly. It can be a highly stressful and dangerous job, and it takes a certain set of unique skills and characteristics to be successful in the role.
As a result, its a profession thats not for everybody.
To give you an idea of whether or not youd potentially be suitable, weve compiled a brief list of what it takes to operate in the line of duty. These are the 12 key skills needed to be a police officer.
What Do Police Look For In A Background Check
The background exam is a very thorough investigation of the applicants past. It is common for the hiring parties to speak to colleagues, family members, neighbours, landlords, as well as present and past employers. This helps to determine whether you have a track record of high ethical standards in all areas of your life. You will be required to provide your criminal record, driving record, credit history, and history of alcohol and drug use. Additionally, you will need to pass a polygraph exam that shows whether you have been dishonest or deceitful in answering any of the questions throughout the application process.
When applying to police agencies, you will be disqualified if*:
- You have matters pending at a criminal court
- You participated in any indictable offenses. These offenses are the mostserious of criminal activities, which include murder, sexual assault, and terrorist activities.
- You have a criminal conviction that has not been pardone.
- You participated in less serious criminal behaviour or activity within one year of applying. These activities are referred to as summary conviction offenses under the Criminal Code. They include illicit drug use, theft, and impaired driving.
- You have been dishonourably discharged or dismissed from any other law enforcement organization
- You have a pending or current personal bankruptcy
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Complete Coursework & Field Training
The coursework involved in a program that leads to work as a police officer can vary depending upon the institution and the degree level. For instance, those in a training academy will dive right into the nitty-gritty of everyday police work and not touch on general education requirements, such as you would find in an associate degree program. In both the associate and the bachelors program, students will encounter not only general education courses and several possible electives, but they will also focus on the core courses for police officers, such as those in criminal justice, ethics, corrections systems, communication, and more. Heres a good idea of courses you might encounter, either in the core curriculum of the degree program or at the police academy:
- Patrol Procedures
Pass The Post Exam & Become A Police Officer
In order to work as a police officer, aspiring applicants must pass the Peace Officer Standards and Training or Police Officer Standards and Training exam. Commonly known as the POST exam, this is required for each state except Hawaii . Each state has subtle differences in their testing procedure, requirements, and the test itself, so its important to do in-depth research on the test your particular state requires.
Examsfor police officers include not only the POST written examination which includes an evaluation of grammar, reading comprehension, andwriting but other points as well, such as physical agility,medical health, psychological fitness, background review, and an oralinterview. Some states might add other requirements, such as apolygraph test. Once these tests are satisfactorily passed, graduatesare ready to work as police officers. The procedure it takes to getfrom passing the tests to wearing the badge depends on the state andin some cases, the department itself.
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What Do You Need To Become A Police Constable In Toronto
Officer candidates follow a detailed application and training process to become police constables with TPS. Once hired, new recruits attend the Ontario Police College for Basic Constable Training. You need to meet the following minimum requirements to become a Police Constable in Toronto:
- Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada,
- Be at least 18 years of age,
- Be physically and mentally able to perform the duties of the position, having regard to your own safety and the safety of members of the public,
- Have successfully completed at least four years of secondary school education or its equivalent. . Where education has been completed outside Ontario, official proof of equivalency must be obtained,
- Be of good moral character and habits, meaning that you are an individual other people would look upon as being trustworthy and having integrity.
In addition, you must:
- Have no criminal convictions for which a pardon has not been granted,
- Possess a valid driver’s license with no more than six accumulated demerit points, permitting you to drive an automobile in Ontario with full driving privileges,
- Have current certification in CPR and first aid by the time the offer of employment is given,
- Possess a valid O.A.C.P. certificate,
- Have a minimum of 20/40 vision, with normal colour acuity,
- Successfully pass the hearing standards as outlined by the O.A.C.P.,
- Be able to pass a security clearance as well as a background investigation, credit and reference checks.
What Is The Employment Process
From there, the employment process to become a police officer in California is:
- Submit an application.
- You must pass a number of background checks that may include a polygraph. “Past behavior will be closely scrutinized,” reads the LAPD recruitment website, “and only candidates with the highest probability of success will be appointed as Police Officers.”
- Undergo a medical exam.
- Some counties also require a Personal Qualifications Essay . In Los Angeles, a score of over 70 is required to be added to a list of qualified candidates. You may re-take this test again in 6 months if you dont get a high enough score.
It can take anywhere between six months to a year to complete the hiring process.
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Compensation And Benefits Are Good
Working as a police officer comes with salary and benefits packages that few other careers can match. The Bureau of Labor Statistics puts the median salary for officers at $62,960 in 2017, up from $61,600 a year earlier. Half of all officers earned more than this, and half earned less.
Pay raises are typical as officers put in more and more years of service. Retirement benefits and health benefits are superior to those offered by many other professions.
And you can live and work anywhere. You’d be hard pressed to find a city, town, county, or state that doesn’t employ some type of law enforcement personnel.
Of course, these are just a few reasons to consider working in law enforcement. If you’re looking for a solid career opportunity with some significant rewards, you could do worse than this field.
How Do You Become A Police Officer In Toronto
To join the Toronto Police Service as a police constable, they outline the following steps:
Please be advised that the process for becoming a Police Constable is competitive and as such, an applicant may be declined at any stage of the process. If you have any questions regarding the above information, please contact a member of the TPS Recruiting Section.
For those interested in the hiring requirements for other local police services within Ontario, as well as for the Ontario Provincial Police , hiring requirements may be different than those outlined above. See the hiring requirements for the OPP here.
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If You Have A Degree: A Graduate Diploma
For those who have a degree which is not related to Policing, there is an option to do a graduate diploma in Professional Policing Practice. This is a 2-year course which is based on on-the-job training, with some additional learning to support your work.
If you want to find out which forces are currently recruiting graduates in your desired location, take a look at this useful website.
A Police Officer’s Job Is Never Routine
Every day has the potential to be completely different from the one before. There’s no better environment than law enforcement for those who hate monotony. Routine can change on a dime.
Not only does each shift have the potential to be different from the last, but the opportunities to diversify your job tasks are usually abundant. Are you tired of patrol? Find out what’s involved in transferring into investigations. Bored of investigating traffic crashes? Consider working toward becoming a K-9 officer.
Law enforcement allows motivated people to try their hand at a host of unique and interesting skills and jobs.
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Our Organisation Has People With Different Backgrounds Experiences And Interests What Unites Us Is That Were All Working Toward The Same Vision
We encourage applications from anyone whos got what it takes, regardless of your gender, ethnicity, culture, sexuality, or faith. Were also very interested in applicants who understand different languages and cultures. New Zealands diversity is growing, so bring your background and values to the job.
Above all else, youll want to help people in your community. Youll need to make tough calls, build community networks, and instill confidence in those around you. Youll understand the communities you serve and identify and examine the problems that lead to trouble.
This role can influence the lives of many. If you decide to push ahead and apply, our constabulary recruitment staff will look to see if you have these meaningful qualities:
- Outstanding communication skills