Tuesday, March 27, 2018

CVTC, UWEC Agreement to Help Law Enforcement Students

A new agreement with CVTC will help UW-Eau Claire students

Article Photo - CVTC, UWEC Agreement to Help Law Enforcement Students

CVTC Law Enforcement Academy students practice active countermeasures during a 2016 Academy session.

A new agreement with Chippewa Valley Technical College will help UW-Eau Claire students who are planning careers in law enforcement in Wisconsin get into the workforce more quickly.

UW-Eau Claire criminal justice majors who have completed at least 60 college credits now can apply to earn certification through CVTC’s Law Enforcement Academy. The 19 credits they earn at CVTC can transfer back to UW-Eau Claire, allowing students to secure the required academy certification while still making it possible for them to graduate in four years.

“This is a great opportunity for our students who are interested in pursuing careers in law enforcement,” said Dr. Jason Spraitz, program coordinator and associate professor of criminal justice. “It will shorten the amount of time it takes for them to begin their careers and, likely, make them more attractive job candidates.

“UW-Eau Claire and CVTC are both very good at what we do, so it makes sense for us to work together to strengthen an already strong law enforcement community in the area.”

While completing the academy, the students will remain enrolled in UW-Eau Claire but will not take any courses during that semester.

“This agreement will help us provide consistency in training throughout the region,” said Rob Teuteberg, an instructor at the CVTC Law Enforcement Academy. “We have both UW-Eau Claire and CVTC criminal justice program students attend the academy, as well as students from other schools. The academy brings their education in the criminal justice field together into practical training for certified law enforcement officers. This agreement not only strengthens our ties with UW-Eau Claire, it strengthens relationships between the CVTC Law Enforcement Academy and law enforcement agencies throughout the region.”

The new agreement is great news for law enforcement agencies throughout Wisconsin because it will help agencies fill critical positions in a timely and affordable manner, says Kyle Roder, a 2003 UW-Eau Claire criminal justice graduate who currently serves as the public information officer for the Eau Claire Police Department.

“Many law enforcement agencies do not have the manpower and budget to hire and wait until the new hire completes an 18-week recruit class, followed by an internal field training program,” Roder says. “While the Eau Claire Police Department is large enough that it can hire new officers before they complete the recruit training, doing so puts a significant void in our patrol resources during that time.”

Wisconsin requires law enforcement officers to have a minimum of 60 college credits, followed by successful completion of the 720-hour law enforcement academy, to be licensed.

Agencies throughout the state, other than the Milwaukee and Madison police departments, look to technical colleges — including CVTC — to run academy programs that result in the certification.

Spraitz says that both UW-Eau Claire and CVTC play important roles in preparing students for successful careers in the field of criminal justice, including in the Chippewa Valley.

“Our goal at UWEC is to provide a broad-based educational experience that builds on our students’ analytical and critical thinking skills as well as their oral and written communication skills,” Spraitz says. “The CVTC academy provides training on the applied and experiential techniques that will serve students well in their future careers. Speaking only for myself, I take great pride any time I see my former students at their swearing-in ceremonies or when I see them on the job at various community events. I like to think this partnership will help even more students pursue their dreams.”

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