February 25, 2014
Ninety two recruits reported to the Training Academy to start Week 7. The recruits only had four days of instruction due to Presidents’ Day; however, four days in recruit training is still a long week.
Legal instruction is challenging to the recruits and makes up a considerable portion of academy academics. Capt. Greg Zarotney presented instruction on domestic violence and crime victim rights law, while D/Sgt. Mike Church presented instruction on crimes against persons.
The recruits also completed their first practical exercise in Patrols. The practical was a traffic stop and the arrest of a driver with a suspended license. Recruits apply their classroom instruction to a scenario similar to what they will encounter in the field. They had to demonstrate their knowledge of criminal law, policy and procedures, and their own proficiency in interacting with people and making an arrest during the scenario.
In Water Safety, the recruits responded to a scenario involving a call for service in the training tank. The recruits had to report to the tank as though they were on patrol and were needed at a life threatening water emergency. Upon arrival at the tank, the recruits had to assess the situation, enter the tank, and employ the life-saving skills they have been taught. The scenario is designed to be realistic to what officers encounter in the field by providing limited information and creating a stress-filled environment from bystanders who are often present in a real world emergency.
Training continued in Defensive Tactics, First Aid, and Firearms as more information was given to the recruits to retain.
Week 7 ended with 89 recruits released for weekend furlough.
February 18, 2014
One hundred recruits returned to start Week 6. At the end of this week, the recruits will have completed over 25 percent of their training.
The recruits’ grueling academic schedule continues with instruction covering admissions and confessions, contraband and regulatory crimes, civil rights law, processing property, and public order crimes. Insp. Matt Bolger, D/Sgt. Mike Church, and D/Sgt. Tom DeClercq provided instruction in these areas.
The recruits completed a First Aid practical where they were required to demonstrate their ability to respond to airway obstructions and administer rescue breathing and CPR to adults, infants, and children. They also continued their training in Firearms and Defensive Tactics.
After much nervous anticipation, the recruits began the Water Safety program this week. Water Safety is challenging to all, but for some, the challenge is significant. During the program, the recruits will learn skills to save themselves and others should such an event ever arise. With the thousands of miles of shoreline and rivers in the state of Michigan, a trooper is never far from water and the potential to have to use his or her water safety skills is a very real possibility. By the end of the Water Safety program, the recruits will understand why there is no pool at the Training Academy – it’s called a tank!
Physical Training can be challenging both physically and mentally; however, this week was also challenging academically as the written tests included a Physical Training component. Also, on Friday morning the recruits were introduced to their first day of stairs and chairs. Normally a chair is used for taking a break, but not in Physical Training. The recruits will forever remember the new use of a folding chair.
Week 6 ended with 93 recruits present and accounted for.
February 11, 2014
One hundred and two recruits returned to the Training Academy on Sunday night to begin Week 5. For the recruits, January 2014 will be forever known as the month they started their journey with the Michigan State Police. Although January is completed, their journey has just begun. During the month of February, the recruits will face another set of challenges as they continue to learn what it takes to become a Michigan State Police trooper.
Guest instructors this week included D/Sgt. Chris Corriveau who provided instruction on the laws of arrest, D/Sgt. Kyle McPhee who provided instruction on auto theft, Mr. Scott Rothermel who provided instruction on crimes against property and juvenile law, Sgt. Michele Robinson who provided instruction on interacting with juveniles and their families, and Lt. Lisa Rish who provided instruction on Ethics. The recruits also received instruction on fear management from Dr. Robert Wolford and Dr. Richard Copen from the Office of Behavioral Science. Additionally, the recruits continued to receive instruction in the areas of Firearms, Patrols, First Aid, Report Writing, and Defensive Tactics.
The recruits began submitting daily reports this week as they will for the rest of their careers. They also submitted their first Automated Incident Capture System (AICS) report as part of their Report Writing class. These reports require additional time and add to an already busy day. The amount of information and training the recruits are given can be overwhelming. They must learn to budget their time to study and take advantage of every minute to be successful.
Week 5 ended with 100 recruits being released for weekend furlough.