Explorer Academy 2010
Teens Go Through Police Training in Sunnyside
This week in Sunnyside, 150 teens and young adults are voluntarily going through law enforcement training.
Yakima Police officer Ira Cavin, who helps run the academy said, "the goal of the program itself is to give young people who may think they want a career in law enforcement some first-hand experience of what it is like to be a police officer."
Saundra Turner of Olympia has participated in the program for two years, and says it's cultivated her love of law enforcement.
"My first basic really was life-changing. It definitely showed me discipline. It taught me about teamwork," Saundra said.
Yoshi King is new to the program. He just moved to Washington from Australia, where he was involved in similar training.
King said he enjoys the discipline,"they're all real nice guys, its their job...I know how it all works. I know when they have to be mean and why. They do a good job of it though I'll tell you that!"
Officers donate their time to come and teach for the six-day academy. Explorers are taught everything from law enforcement basics, to combat tactics, and how to serve search warrants.
Many of them, come back every year.
Cavin said, "to see that maturity and growth that takes place over as little as one or two years, its pretty impressive to watch that training happen."
Turner said, "it's just a good feeling to know that we're involved in something that's going to help out the community."