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Saturday, May 18, 2024

MPD brings back law enforcement mentoring program

The Madison Police Department has restored a program meant to provide youth with a comprehensive look at a career in law enforcement and to develop positive community relationships with police.

In a Monday blog post, MPD Chief Mike Koval explained the reinstated Explorer Post 911 Program is  an “effort to create opportunities to engage with our community particularly our youth in ways that promote safety, cultivate understanding and build trust.”

“Police Exploring,” as it is now known, last operated in 2002, but had ended due to lack of interest.

The program, which is open to young adults between the ages of 14 and 20, accepted 25 applicants from Madison and the surrounding areas last month.

The comprehensive application process included individual resumes, essay responses and academic transcripts. Koval said those accepted will be mentored twice a month by volunteer police officers through classroom activities and ride-alongs.

Police Exploring is a division of the national Learning for Life Exploring program, which has worked with thousands of businesses, organizations and government agencies since 1998. The national program also facilitates career mentorship in other fields like law, science, skills trades, social services and careers in the arts and humanities.

Koval also wrote that participants will assist in multiple community events, including Safety Saturday, various Fourth of July celebrations and Concerts on the Square.

Eventually, those involved will compete against other programs at the local, regional and national level in order to test their skills in criminal investigations.

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