Honoring Law Enforcement: National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day

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Jan. 9 is recognized as National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day.

Thank you to all who have made the decision to serve as a law enforcement officer, and a special thanks on National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day to those agencies and officers in our community:

  • Belleair Police Department
  • Clearwater Police Department
  • Gulfport Police Department
  • Indian Shores Police Department
  • Kenneth City Police Department
  • Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office
  • Largo Police Department
  • Pinellas Park Police Department
  • Pinellas County Schools District Police
  • St. Petersburg Police Department
  • Tarpon Springs Police Department
  • And all other state-level law enforcement agencies operating in Pinellas County

And thank you to all of our academic and academy students who are choosing to learn and gain knowledge through our programs to serve our community in the future.

Why did I choose this profession?

Here is a note from a retired police officer on National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day:

“As a retired law enforcement officer with over 25 years of experience I have asked myself ‘Why did I choose this profession?’

The job can be mundane and routine. Often thankless and the rewards are few. We hear and read about the dangers, and mistakes or misjudgment of officers are highly publicized. They say cops live in a ‘fish bowl.’ I feel like this is a valid perspective.

Living in a fish bowl can have its advantages and disadvantages.

One of the advantages from my perspective is that you get to see everything just as everyone gets to see you. As a cop, you get opportunities to see people at their worst and their best. At their worst is when they are in trouble or have violated the law. Cops see people at their best when they help their fellow man, see people trying to help each other, and observe fellow officers and citizens live their lives based on integrity and purpose.

A disadvantage can be the ‘scar tissue’ officers collect by seeing so much negativity. It’s difficult to witness the things cops see and not be affected.

Sure, today things are dangerous. Many people are running from the ‘fire.’ Cops are the ones running to the danger.

I was asked to explain why I became a cop. My parents raised us with a sense of respect and care for our fellow man. To live by a code of integrity and commitment. Law enforcement has allowed me the opportunity to live my life in a way that was comfortable and rewarding. Allowed me to be of service to my community and country.

Most cops try to live within their communities and be good neighbors and friends.

This is the life I live and will continue to try to live. I hope that I have been and continue to be a visible, positive part of my community. I aspire to live in such a way that others see the good in me.

In my current job, I get the chance to help mold, influence and develop future officers. I’m not trying to create mini-mes. I want to help develop people who can serve their communities with integrity, professionalism and caring.

To answer my original question; Why I did I choose profession? Sometimes I still ask myself.  The pay is not the greatest. People aren’t always happy to see you (especially in their rear view mirror with the lights flashing). The job is dangerous and sometimes thankless.

But, for me, there is the satisfaction of living a life of service. That you have tried your best help people. When you stopped something really bad from happening or provided that necessary assistance in a time of need, there is no more satisfying feeling that you can experience.

I hope that next time you see that person in the marked police car that you think of them as your friend, neighbor, fellow PTA member, Little League coach and a decent person who is trying to be of service.

I offer this note in appreciation to the men and women who serve our communities.”

And – thank you to all of our academic and academy students who are choosing to learn and gain knowledge through our programs to serve our community in the future.

Interested in pursuing a career in Law Enforcement or Public Safety?

Well, did you know…

SPC’s Allstate Center is the home of public safety at the college. We offer many programs related to public safety including:

  • Public Safety Training Academies:
    • Corrections Academy
    • Equivalency of Training Academy
    • Firefighting Academy
    • Law Enforcement Academy
  • Academic – College of Public Safety Administration
    • Associate of Science Degrees:
      • Criminal Justice Technology A.S.
      • Crime Scene Technology A.S.
      • Emergency Administration and Management A.S.
      • Fire Science Technology A.S.
    • Public Safety Administration Bachelor of Applied Science
    • Certificates:
      • Emergency Administration and Management Certificate
      • Homeland Security Certificate
      • Public Safety Telecommunication Certificate 
      • Fire Officer Supervisor Certificate

Additionally, we offer many other in-services and advanced training. For more information about our programs and course offering, please contact publicsafetyadvising@spcollege.edu or learn more online.

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