Photo courtesy of William Harvey.
Regular readers of PoliceMag.com may have noticed a subtle change. You may have wondered why the Recruit channel is missing. Don't panic. We haven't gone anywhere. We've just made a slight improvement!
The Recruit channel and the Training blog have merged into Careers & Training. This new format will have much of the same content from both but now in a central location for everyone. There will also be new material on career planning and tracking.
Originally, the Recruit channel was designed for the pre-academy, recruit and first-year officer with an occasional blog post for the Field Training Officer (FTO). The focus was on those formulative years of an officer's career. This was great, but some articles, ads, and posts could have been beneficial for veteran officers and could have slipped away from them due to the title.
The Training blog was similar in that it was focusing on the trainers, instructors, and academy staff. Great items here too for them, but again, the channel title could have misguided potential readers.
We've now merged these topics under the new heading to give everyone—from the academy student to instructors—tips on keeping their skills honed. The combination of these two will help get the training tips to all. I'm very pleased. Not a week goes by without an e-mail or telephone call from a reader seeking career advice. Often these questions have lead to columns but others were left on the shelf. I can now address some age-old issues with this new format.
I've always harped on training and guidance. Training can never be shortchanged. As budgets tighten, every training dollar must be stretched and training time maximized. My decades of overseeing the training function and as an advisory board member of two great organizations—POLICE Magazine and the International Law Enforcement Educators Trainers Association (ILEETA)—makes me ecstatic to be affiliated with this channel.
I've also repeatedly stated that career counseling is one area where law enforcement performs poorly. Face it, we have counselors in high school and college. In the military, we had career counselors who were cleverly disguised as the re-enlistment officer. In law enforcement, we're still coping with this. I have often felt that because of a lack of counseling, we've lost several potentially great officers who simply became disgruntled and walked away. We invest far too much in recruiting, training, equipping, and training an officer to allow them to slip away over something that we should have been doing all along.
I look forward to painting my columns now with a wider paint brush. Be sure to tell your colleagues about the changes and let's get down to improving our vocational career and get some training done. As always, train hard, train smart, and train safe.