Its two o clock in the morning. You wake up to the sound of a drug-addict vandalizing a mobile home. When this happens, who do you call? Not your mother, but the cops. The typical cop faces this situation on a regular basis. A policemens life is far from Hollywood; it is quite difficult to work where most people dont acknowledge your life or job. Most people think of policemen as a nuisance, but cops are much more than that; they save lives. Policemen keep the peace, enforce laws, control riots, prevent injustices, investigate crimes, and help people.
In small cities, police do different things, while in larger cities, officers tend to specialize. A police officers routine can range from receiving orders to chaising high-speed pursuits (Tech Careers 765). The federal, state, county, and city level employs policemen. They are under oath to uphold the law twenty-four hours a day (Phifer 281). Going to college is not currently required, but with many people wanting to be police officers, it is best to take a two or four year course.
High school classes that will help include psychology, sociology, English, law, mathematics, U. S. government, history, chemistry, physics, foreign languages, and driver education. Most departments offer programs for young adults to learn what it is like to be a police officer. There are also police academies for people to learn how to be a cop. The minimum age one can apply is twenty-one (Tech Careers 768-769). According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook, a starting police officer will earn an average of $28,200 a year(369), as officers get promoted, they earn more money.
The highest policemen, a Police Chief, earns around $56,300, with a maximum of $69,600. They normally get days off or normal pay for any overtime they work. Overtime is awarded often, as police are required to stay on call for 24-hours a day. Police enjoy a wide range of benefits, such as job security, paid vacation, sick leave, and health insurance. Even if an officer is put on probation, he/she is usually offered the same position and pay upon return (Occupational Outlook 369).
Police departments usually offer retirement plans and eventually retirement after only twenty to twenty-five years of service, with half pay as a pension. This gives the officer plenty of time to consider a second career. Retired police usually work as security guards or other low-profile jobs for a long time. After retirement, a police officer usually has peaceful time knowing that he once helped keep crime off the street (Phifer 280-281).
There are many related jobs connected with police officers, including correctional officers, guards, and fire marshals. Most policemen who have retired go into one of these occupations (Occupation Outlook 369). Police jobs are expected to increase as crime increases. The job may change as technology changes. Most officers do not get fired. They usually retire, move to better positions, or leave the department. Retirement ages are usually low (Phifer 280-281). Police see many things during their careers, this is what makes it interesting.