POST Council unanimously approves training program at USU Eastern
Starting this fall, those seeking to become law enforcement officers won't have to leave Price to obtain their training. Last week, the Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Council approved a Utah State University Eastern proposal to offer vocational certifications and college classes in law enforcement.
At their March 27 meeting in Santa Clara, the POST Council voted unanimously to approve a curriculum and program proposal submitted by Associate Professor M. Scott Henrie on behalf of the Utah State campus in Carbon County.
Henrie was also chosen by Utah's POST Council to become the program's director, making him USU Eastern's Satellite Academy Director. The 21-year law enforcement professional and 9-year college professor explained that POST is responsible for choosing the educators who direct police training across Utah.
According to Henrie, the Price college was approached several years ago by POST about filling a gap in training across Eastern Utah. Henrie explained that the gap was created when a private firm left the Uintah Basin around 2008.
Because of the economy, Henrie and the college weren't ready to take on and assemble the training program until last year when the professor and college began developing a unique program.
In the fall of 2013, Henrie submitted USU Eastern's proposal, outlining the college's training curriculum. According to the new director, the local college's POST courses will differ from traditional police academies in that they will offer college credit as well as the traditional vocational certifications given at POST.
"Un-certified officers who were hired in Carbon County before this fall, would have to train at Salt Lake Community College over a 16 week period. That distance education program provided POST certifications for a large portion of the state," said Henrie. "Our planning included approval from Utah State in Logan which allowed for college courses to be associated with the vocational training."
Those interested in starting the program this fall need to apply by the end of April to be considered, said Henrie.
Students must be accepted to attend POST training.
Officials within the new department are hoping to start with between 10 and 15 students in the fall. However, if class sizes begin to exceed 25, a second session will have to be made available by the college.
"Some portions of the certification must be taken in eight hour blocks, so class size can become an issue," said Henrie.
The traditional police officer training certification takes place all at once. In Price, students will attend class five nights a week for five hours each evening with a few weekend classes involved.
Check out Tuesday's Sun Advocate for more about the USU Eastern proposal and POST agreement.