It was a full crowd in the Buchanan Library Friday as seven new graduates of Lethbridge College's Police Cadet program received their academic certificates and badges.
The graduating class completed 22 weeks of training in the award-winning program, developed in partnership with southern Alberta police agencies.
Launched by the Centre for Justice and Human Services (CJHS) in 2017, the Police Cadet program is designed to meet industry demand and ensure newly hired officers are well-trained in both hard skills, such as firearms use, and soft skills, such as interpersonal communication, ethical accountability and teamwork.
It's the only police training program of its kind in Canada.
This year, School of Justice Studies instructors Gord Ryall, Cate Rigaux and Ken Sauter overhauled the curriculum to further meet the needs of students and agency partners. The team engaged with subject matter experts from agency partners to ensure that content was relevant and appropriate. They completed outcome, competency, and course mapping, revised and updated all course content, created lesson plans, and interactive images and activities. The college's Centre for Teaching, Learning and Innovation contributed expertise through a learning experience designer, an instructional designer, as well as writers, editors, formators and media specialists.
“This was an enormous undertaking and has created an amazing product,” says Trudi Mason, Dean, CJHS. “A huge thank you goes to our college team and the multitude of agency partners who jumped into the revisions.”
Friday’s graduating class included two cadets from the Blood Tribe Police Service, Austin Giant and Kalib Thunder Chief; three cadets from the Lethbridge Police Service, Marc Trotta, Alison McCulloch and Taylor Toner; and two cadets from the Taber Police Service, Cobe Cobarrubias and Brandon Demers.
The new constables, having successfully completed the program, will now return to their communities to join their agencies and begin their policing careers.
“We are so pleased to be able to offer high-quality programming that meets the needs of our partner police agencies,” says Mason. “Preparing new officers to serve their communities through the Police Cadet program is a privilege, and a valued collaboration.”
Upcoming recruit classes will be held in January in Medicine Hat and in Lethbridge again in February and July.