GVSU Police Academy holds graduation ceremony
Posted on August 15, 2019
Forty-eight police academy recruits graduated August 15 from the Grand Valley State University Police Academy.
More than 600 people attended the 45th Police Academy Graduation ceremony, held in the Thomas J. and Marcia J. Haas Center for Performing Arts on the Allendale Campus.
President Philomena V. Mantella congratulated the graduates, thanking them for choosing a path of selfless service, integrity and compassion.
"You've answered the call of our communities and society to build positive relationships and improve the world we live in through care, awareness and a mindfulness of those around us," Mantella said.
George Grant, dean of the College of Community and Public Service, told the graduates they are part of a civil society, ready to serve because of the rigorous training they completed.
Kent County Sheriff Michelle LaJoye-Young, keynote speaker for the ceremony, encouraged the graduates to always remember the reasons why they chose to enter the field of law enforcement.
"Your desire to serve your community isn't common," said LaJoye-Young."Many of the challenges you will face will never make the news. Remembering why I chose to serve helps sustain me and inspires me to want to continue to serve."
The 2019 police academy class is the largest to date, including 37 men and 11 women.
Williamson Wallace, director of Criminal Justice Training, said 17 graduates are already employed by area law enforcement agencies who sponsored their training; the remaining 31 are seeking employment and many have conditional offers.
Sponsoring agencies include the Grand Rapids Police Department, Grand Haven Department of Public Safety, Muskegon City Police Department, Kent County Sheriff's Office and Ingham County Sheriff's Office.
Grand Valley’s Police Academy provides 670.5 hours of instruction in 16 weeks, going beyond the mandatory minimum training requirement of 594 hours set by the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards.
GVSU's academy is a leader in the state, introducing innovative training methods and techniques that are setting the bar for law enforcement education.
For more information, visit gvsu.edu/cj/policeacademy