Police Academy Now Accepting Alternate Route Applicants

UNION COUNTY — Individuals who are interested in becoming a New Jersey law enforcement officer will have the opportunity to apply to become an Alternate Route candidate via the John H. Stamler Police Academy in Scotch Plains, New Jersey. Applications will be accepted beginning Monday, Sept. 24.

The Alternate Route program allows qualified candidates to participate in the New Jersey Police Training Commission’s Basic Course for Police Officers without first being appointed to a municipal or county police agency. The benefit is the same for both the Alternate Route recruit and the hiring agency: Upon graduation, the recruit is pre-trained and ready to go to work.

Registration materials will be available online at the Police Academy’s website — www.ucnj.org/policeacademy — and at the John H. Stamler Police Academy in Scotch Plains beginning at 8:30AM on Monday, Sept. 24.

To register, applicants need to hand-deliver their completed Test Application Form and non-refundable $75 examination fee to the main office at the John H. Stamler Police Academy, 1776 Raritan Road, Scotch Plains (on the Union County Vo-Tech campus) by 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 14. The registrant must bring photo identification to submit the registration form, and also present it on the day of the examination.

The written examination will be administered at the John H. Stamler Police Academy on Saturday, Nov. 17. Pre-registration is required.

Upon submission of the registration form to the Police Academy, the registrant will be given additional instructions regarding the Alternate Route Candidate Test Application.

The state sets forth that an Alternate Route candidate be a citizen of the United States, be able to read, write and speak the English language well and intelligently; be of good moral character, and have not been convicted of any criminal offense involving moral turpitude, and be sound in body and of good health sufficient to satisfy the board of trustees of the Police and Firemen’s Retirement System of New Jersey as to eligibility for membership in the retirement system.

Candidates also must have a minimum of 60 earned academic credits from an accredited college or university. Qualified veterans, as defined by the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, who have not earned 60 credits, can substitute two years of full-time, active duty military service, or a combination of college credits and full time active duty military service to satisfy the education requirement.

The written examination is the first step of the process. Registrants who score highest on the examination will be considered for the handful of openings as part of Class #109, which attends the Police Academy from 5:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. July through December 2013, or Class #110, which runs from January through June 2014.

Tuition for an Alternate Route Recruit is $1,890. Additionally, the Alternate Route Recruit is responsible for approximately $2,500 in additional purchases, including uniforms, equipment, supplies, ammunition, a medical examination and psychological testing. The candidate also has to undergo drug testing and physical ability testing.

Participating in the Alternate Route application process does not guarantee selection as an Alternate Route recruit, and successful completion of the Basic Training Program for Police Officers by a candidate who has been selected to participate as an Alternate Route recruit does not guarantee employment. Upon graduation, a candidate has three years to find full-time employment, at which time, the certification expires.

Detailed information about the program and the necessary paperwork can be accessed online at www.ucnj.org/policeacademy.

This program is offered by the Union County Prosecutor’s Office and Union County Police Chiefs Association, and in accordance to the guidelines set forth by the New Jersey Police Training Commission. The Alternate Route program has been resumed for 2013 after a two-year hiatus by the state.

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