21 Aug 2014
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Waukesha Citizens Academy: It's Come to an End

But now I'm looking forward to graduation, continuing friendships and helping out the police department with fundraisers.

Waukesha Citizens Academy: It's Come to an End

Graduation is next week, and I have to admit, I’m a little disappointed.

The last few month, I’ve been at the learning the ins and outs of the day-to-day operations of the department. Going into the class, I thought I’d know a lot since I’ve written about the police department for two years. I didn’t really know what to expect, kept an open mind and went to class.

The last few months have been eye opening. I’ve looked forward to our Waukesha Citizens Police Academy class each week, and I've learned so much.

  • I've learned that a taser REALLY HURTS, but it's only for five seconds.
  • I've learned that when a person starts fighting with an officer, it's not always going to be a fair fight. Police always have to win in those use-of-force situations.
  • I've learned about the preparation and training they have to do as new officers, as they go on the witness stand during trials and present their truthful case to a jury.

The timing of classes couldn’t have been better for me. It was week two when my best friend of 10 years moved to Texas for a nursing job. I wouldn't have even moved to Waukesha if it hadn't been for her and her family, and I suddenly had to experience this city without my partner in crime. While we still talk on the phone, text and video chat via Skype, it's not the same as it is to laugh in person about men and work drama. It’s been a tough few months, harder than I've let on to a lot of people.

But it's helped that I’ve made new friends through the class and it’s been awesome getting to know the various personalities in class and in the department. And by personalities, I mean personalities! 

That’s why I am really excited to join the Waukesha Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association. I’ve filled out the form and just have to scrounge my apartment for an envelope and a stamp to send on back.

The Waukesha Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association helps with department fundraisers. You can find them at the Janboree and you know that corn that is provided at ? Yep, WCPAAA.

In fact, according to what was presented to our class Thursday night, the WCPAAA brings in about double the funds that it costs to run Waukesha Citizens Academy.

With nearly 400 people taking the class since its beginning, the WCPAAA currently has about 80 active members, according to Michael Crowley, who took the class about three years ago.

The fundraising that the alumni association does is a way to give back, Crowley explained.

“We received 11 weeks of very high-quality education,” he explained.

I agree. So while it’s bittersweet that our class has come to an end, there’s about two dozen more people in the community that have a greater knowledge of what the police department does every day.

I’m hoping to stay in touch with my fellow citizens academy alumni and I’m hoping that many of them join up with the alumni association so we can help out with fundraisers to give back to the police department.

I’m especially proud of the ladies in our class. Five of us women were tasered while three of the men decided to give it a try. Good work, ladies!

To Sgt. John Konkol, thanks for spearheading the program and putting as much time as you did into this great experience.

To the rest of the community, if you have the chance to take the academy, consider it. Maybe I’ll see you at a fundraiser in a year or two!

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