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Continued: New demands changing the face of police hiring pools

  • Article by: SHANNON PRATHER , Star Tribune
  • Last update: January 4, 2014 - 8:14 PM

“There was a total disconnect with the type of work we do,” Jess said.

Once in the door, many officers with two-year degrees utilize the city’s tuition assistance program to earn their bachelor’s degree.

The Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office, which provides police services for several north suburbs, requires only a two-year degree, but a four-year one gives candidates an edge, said spokesman Randy Gustafson.

“We are held to a higher public scrutiny level. You need people who are able to meet that public demand and the demands of technology,” Gustafson said.

Gustafson said today’s squad cars are like “driving a high-tech computer.”

He also noted that, for the first time this past year, the sheriff’s department put its new hires through 40 weeks of training and department shadowing.

“It’s a lot of money and you want to make certain you have a really good candidate who makes it through. … You can always teach specific competencies. You can’t teach character.”

 

Shannon Prather • 612-673-4804

 

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