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Become A Law Enforcement Officer

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Working As A Law Enforcement Officer

  • Getting Information
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Outdoors/walking/standing

  • Make Decisions

  • $66,770

    Average Salary

What Does A Law Enforcement Officer Do At Ohio State University

* Patrols assigned area; maintains order; directs vehicle/pedestrian traffic; enforces state laws and regulations; performs assigned investigations of criminal and non-criminal incidents; makes on-view or warrant arrests for criminal statute violations; resolves or prevents conflicts between persons or groups within campus community; enforces traffic laws and regulations; may, with specific supervisory direction, work independently in the resolution of department problems and/or needs; submits detailed reports regarding investigations of criminal and non-criminal incidents.
* May be assigned to a technical or specialized function related to law enforcement operations.
* Subject to 24-hour call in.
* May work evenings and weekends.
* This position is identified as an Essential position, whose presence is required regardless of the existence of an emergency condition, and whose absence from duty could endanger the safety and well-being of the campus population and/or physical plant.
* Written Testing Date: Saturday, March 10th
* Physical Testing Date: Thursday, April 26th
* Keyword: apjobs

What Does A Law Enforcement Officer Do At Federal Reserve Bank

* Ensures proper security by performing all duties of security officer as assigned.
* Ensures security by screening visitors, admitting authorized persons to interior of Bank, directing visitors upon notice from employees, inspecting packages and issuing claim checks, issuing employee ID and visitors badges.
* Operates Law Enforcement computer console and is capable of responding to any alarms appearing on terminal.
* Remains familiar with requirements of fire prevention and bomb threat program and executing plans in time of emergency; tests fire extinguishers and smoke alarms; investigates any related problems.
* Assigns clearances to valid identification card holders.
* Drives Bank automobiles as required; performs preventative maintenance.
* Actively involved in the accomplishment of departmental and Bankwide quality initiatives.
* Fulfills job duties and responsibilities in conformance with sound safety practices.
* Serves as first aid responder in emergency situations and is expected to perform emergency cardiac care and CPR consistent with the training received.
* Qualifies on Bank pistol range under supervision; demonstrates proficiency in use of shotgun.
* Handles fingerprinting, photographing, and preparing employee identification badges.
* Performs other duties as assigned by Lieutenant or Captain

What Does A Law Enforcement Officer Do At George Mason University

* Candidates must be able to perform law enforcement and security functions within the University Police Department.
* Duties, responsibilities and requisite skills include but are not limited to: providing vehicle, bicycle or foot patrol of the campus; responding to calls for service and on-view suspicious activities; resolving complaints; investigating criminal and traffic incidents; providing first responder aid when required; and other duties as assigned.
* The George Mason University Police Department subscribes to a robust community-oriented policing philosophy in order to fulfill its mission

What Does A Law Enforcement Officer Do At Ascension Health

* Performs proactive monitoring of and timely responses to potential/actual security threats.
* Investigates, documents and manages security incidents and hazards.
* Maintains knowledge/follows policies and procedures regarding alarms and emergency/disaster preparedness plans.
* May facilitate planned drills and simulations.
* Provides information and assistance to staff and visitors to promote safety.
* Intervenes in potential violent situations and reports any conditions of risk or hazards to ED staff.
* Performs other duties as assigned.
* Preserves the peace and provides a safe environment for staff, patients and visitors.
* Coordinates mutual aid/backup as necessary.
* Provides an armed/uniformed presence in the ED.
* Keeps a marked vehicle in the designated parking space in the front of the ED

What Does A Law Enforcement Officer Do At San Diego Humane Society

* The starting hourly rate for this position is $18
* an hour and will be commensurate with experience

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How To Become A Law Enforcement Officer

Education requirements range from a high school diploma to a college degree. Most police and detectives must graduate from their agency’s training academy before completing a period of on-the-job training. Candidates must be U.S. citizens, usually at least 21 years old, and able to meet rigorous physical and personal qualification standards. A felony conviction or drug use may disqualify a candidate.


Police and detective applicants must have at least a high school diploma or equivalent, although many federal agencies and some police departments require some college coursework or a college degree. Many community colleges, 4-year colleges, and universities offer programs in law enforcement and criminal justice, and agencies may offer financial assistance to officers who pursue these, or related, degrees. Knowledge of a foreign language is an asset in many federal agencies and geographical regions.

Fish and game wardens applying for federal jobs with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service typically need a college degree; and those applying to work for a state’s natural resources department often need a high school diploma or some college study in a related field, such as biology or natural resources management.

Federal agencies typically require a bachelor's degree. For example, FBI and DEA special agent applicants are often college graduates.

State and local agencies encourage applicants to continue their education after high school, by taking courses and training related to law enforcement. Many applicants for entry-level police jobs have taken some college classes, and a significant number are college graduates. Many community colleges, 4-year colleges, and universities offer programs in law enforcement and criminal justice. Many agencies offer financial assistance to officers who pursue these or related degrees.


Candidates for appointment usually attend a training academy before becoming an officer. Training includes classroom instruction in state and local laws and constitutional law, civil rights, and police ethics. Recruits also receive training and supervised experience in areas such as patrol, traffic control, firearm use, self-defense, first aid, and emergency response.

Federal law enforcement agents undergo extensive training, usually at the U.S. Marine Corps base in Quantico, Virginia, or at a Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Detectives normally begin their careers as police officers before being promoted to detective.

FBI special agent applicants typically must have at least 3 years of professional work experience in areas ranging from computer science to accounting.

Other Experience

Some police departments have cadet programs for people interested in a career in law enforcement who do not yet meet age requirements for becoming an officer. These cadets do clerical work and attend classes until they reach the minimum age requirement and can apply for a position with the regular force. Military or police experience may be considered beneficial for potential cadets.

Cadet candidates must be U.S. citizens, usually be at least 21 years old, have a driver’s license, and meet specific physical qualifications. Applicants may have to pass physical exams of vision, hearing, strength, and agility, as well as written exams. Previous work or military experience is often seen as a plus. Candidates typically go through a series of interviews and may be asked to take lie detector and drug tests. A felony conviction may disqualify a candidate.


Police officers usually become eligible for promotion after a probationary period. Promotions to corporal, sergeant, lieutenant, and captain usually are made according to a candidate's position on a promotion list, as determined by scores on a written examination and on-the-job performance. In large departments, promotion may enable an officer to become a detective or to specialize in one type of police work, such as working with juveniles.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Police, detectives, and fish and game wardens must be able to speak with people when gathering facts about a crime and to express details about a given incident in writing.

Empathy. Police officers need to understand the perspectives of a wide variety of people in their jurisdiction and have a willingness to help the public.

Good judgment. Police and detectives must be able to determine the best way to solve a wide array of problems quickly.

Leadership skills. Police officers must be comfortable with being a highly visible member of their community, as the public looks to them for assistance in emergency situations.

Perceptiveness. Officers, detectives, and fish and game wardens must be able to anticipate a person’s reactions and understand why people act a certain way.

Physical stamina. Officers and detectives must be in good physical shape, both to pass required tests for entry into the field, and to keep up with the daily rigors of the job.

Physical strength. Police officers must be strong enough to physically apprehend offenders.

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Law Enforcement Officer Typical Career Paths

Law Enforcement Officer Demographics


  • Male

  • Female

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Asian

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • Arabic

  • German

  • French

  • Tagalog

  • Carrier

  • Blackfoot

  • Portuguese

  • Sami

  • Samoan

  • Turkish

  • Shona

  • Lithuanian

  • Russian

  • Dari

  • Polish

  • Hindi

  • Dakota

  • Urdu

  • Korean

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Law Enforcement Officer Education

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Top Skills for A Law Enforcement Officer


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Top Law Enforcement Officer Skills

  1. Public Safety
  2. Military Personnel
  3. Present Evidence
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Patrolled a high crime rate area of the county and responded to dispatch calls to enforce laws and ensure public safety.
  • Processed criminals, civilians, and military personnel through our system to suppress issues on the installation.
  • Present evidence and testimony in judicial settings.
  • Assigned to the Emergency Response/White House Alert Vehicle with responsibility for first response and surveillance in emergency situations.
  • Assisted in determining internal procedures and departments guidelines for accreditation standards.

Top Law Enforcement Officer Employers

Law Enforcement Officer Videos

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