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May 15, 2023 is the beginning of National Police Week, a celebration in support of police officers. National Police Week was created in 1962 by President John F. Kennedy to honor the sacrifices police officers make each and every day and to honor the police officers who lost their lives in the line of duty.

The United States police has become a powerful force of dedicated officers who keep our communities safe through bravery and hard work.

What Police Officers Do
Police officers enforce the law to protect lives and property. Day-to-day job duties and responsibilities of police officers will vary depending on the jurisdiction they work in. Common responsibilities include:

  • Emergency and nonemergency response
  • Performing traffic stops and issue citations
  • Collecting and securing evidence found at crime scenes
  • Arresting suspects of crimes
  • Obtaining and serving warrants
  • Searching databases for vehicles, records, and warrants
  • Patrolling areas
  • Writing detailed reports and accurately completing forms

How to Become a Police Officer
Each state, city, and county have different protocols when it comes to becoming a police officer. you’ll need to meet specific qualifications and complete an application.However, 

Typical basic requirements include having proof of U.S. citizenship; a high school diploma or GED certificate and, in some cases, a college degree; a valid driver’s license; and at least 21 years of age in most cases.

If you meet these basic requirements, you’ll need to pass the Police Officer Exam, graduate from the agency’s training academy, pass a rigorous physical assessment, and complete on-the-job training.

Similar Occupations
If you’re not sure if becoming a police officer is right for you, there are several other types of careers in law enforcement you can also pursue:

  • Private Detectives and Investigators search for details on legal, personal, and financial incidents
  • Correctional Officers oversee people who have been arrested and are awaiting trial or have been sentenced to jail or prison
  • Bailiffs are officers who maintain the safety of other and ensure order in courtrooms
  • Forensic Science Technicians collect and analyze evidence in criminal investigations
  • Firefighters control and extinguish fires and respond to life, property, and environmental emergencies
  • EMT and Paramedics respond to emergency calls and perform medical services to patients and transport them to hospitals or clinics