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Education

As police forces age, Kent County Sheriff calls for education, training support

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Business leaders of all kinds have talked about needing more skilled workers in their ranks. But they’re not the only ones. Law enforcement agencies also require more skilled employees.

Kent County Sheriff Larry Stelma recently issued a report calling for additional support for community colleges. Those schools are home to most of Michigan’s police academies.

“We would like to see community colleges start the training programs – even incorporate these training programs into their pre-college curriculum,” Stelma said. “Where juniors and seniors in high school have access to some advanced training.”

Additional support Stelma would like to see from community colleges is in the advising department.

“We’d like to see them provide some real, serious career counseling so that when young people do go into public safety fields, they have a better idea as to what they’re getting into,” Stelma said. “That they’re better suited for it and can maybe avoid some of the pitfalls that new recruits can fall into.”

For the full conversation, listen above.

GUEST Larry Stelma is the Kent County sheriff.