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  #1  
Old 09-26-2012, 9:25 AM
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Default Fighting discouragement

To all the current officers of the law here on CGN:

How does one keep from getting discouraged while going through the application/hiring process? I'm going on my third/fourth straight year of applying and actively looking for LEO careers. Looking back to my first initial application date, I never thought I'd still be trying to pursue this dream. I've tried to take every application, test, background investigation, and interview as experience for the future. I've been more proactive in doing things that I can apply to this career as well as my resume. However, more recently I am kicking myself in the a** for not self sponcering an academy. In the years I have been waiting to be picked up, I could have received my POST cert already! I believe that would have opened up more doors for me. Now I am currently looking to perform the modular training course, I see that there aren't any available locally to me (SJ). Is there any advice from someone who has been fighting through a similar situation? Thank you and rant over.
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  #2  
Old 09-26-2012, 10:26 AM
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Hiring has been slowly picking up but is still nothing like it was 4 years ago. Some departments do not recognize the modular academies so make sure the depts you are interested in will accept that. Also, becoming a reserve could be helpful in your effort to go full time.
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  #3  
Old 09-26-2012, 6:21 PM
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I agree with Ernie 100%
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  #4  
Old 09-26-2012, 6:27 PM
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Testing is a full-time job in itself. In a tight economy there can be hundreds of applicants for each open position. You are also competing with laterals from other agencies. I agree, becoming a reserve can help. You just have to keep at it.
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Old 09-26-2012, 8:31 PM
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Thank you all for the replies. I have to figure out the details and logistics of how I'll be able to enroll in the needed training courses with my current schedule.
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  #6  
Old 09-26-2012, 11:30 PM
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My brother tried just like you for a few years before he decided to put himself through an academy. he was picked up towards the end and had a great career.

Also, a friend of mine years ago was brought on as a Reserve Officer and today he is a full time Police Captain. Amazing!

Good luck!
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  #7  
Old 09-27-2012, 1:06 AM
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I applied to dang near every agency within driving distance and it took me over a year to find a job during better economic times. I encourage you to not give up.
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  #8  
Old 09-27-2012, 6:55 AM
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One of my buddies took ten years... a full decade... of applying everywhere and getting a ton of crap thrown in his face... and he finally got picked up after he paid his own way through the academy... by the DEA. Go figure.
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  #9  
Old 09-29-2012, 11:59 PM
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I applied off and on for about 10 years before finally getting picked up. My department actually paid for our academy training too so I was really fortunate.

All I can say is do whatever you can to market yourself and distinguish yourself from the sea of hopeful candidates that show up at every hiring event. Sell yourself, especially during the oral interview.
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  #10  
Old 09-30-2012, 12:38 AM
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Took my ex a little over 3 years to finally get picked up by CHP. Youll get discouraged, but you just have to keep on trying! Or you could move to LA! Im in the application process and was told that if we were squeaky clean on backgrounds/poly; that we could be in academy within 6 months because they are actively hiring.
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  #11  
Old 09-30-2012, 8:36 AM
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Departments are thinking more economically now. They are hiring laterals or people that self sponsor. Actually passing the academy, then FTO, then probation is not hard, but the odds are not in your favor. Departments see this, and would rather save that money up front.

Keep trying. It's almost part of the process now.
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  #12  
Old 09-30-2012, 11:29 AM
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Thank you all!
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  #13  
Old 10-01-2012, 10:32 AM
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I tested for two years and was finally hired in 1976. I would score in the top 5 or 10, but the depts. either would hire only one or two when I was #4 or 6 or 7 when I was #9. Just missing out.

I finally got on with LASD and that process alone took a year.

Hang in there as it will eventually pay off. One day, 25yrs. from now, you'll look back, smile and remember this while sitting at your detective desk.
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  #14  
Old 10-01-2012, 6:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by retired View Post
One day, 25yrs. from now, you'll look back, smile and remember this while sitting at your detective desk.
You want him to go through all that just to sit at a desk and miss patrol?
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  #15  
Old 10-02-2012, 2:45 AM
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You dont. Its a miserable process full of headaches but just know its worth it in the end.
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  #16  
Old 10-02-2012, 7:15 AM
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One thing I might suggest is to go over some of the reasons you may have been rejected and tailor your application and applying around those responses.

For example, if credit was an issue..take 6 months and proactively payoff or close problem accounts. However, if it is an issue like psych or poly that is holding you up, you may need to approach a career in LE differently than as a patrol officer.

In and around LA and San Diego they are looking to hire 10,000+ over the next 5 years. San Jose and San Fran are both hiring as well. Gotta go to the jobs.

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  #17  
Old 10-02-2012, 7:21 AM
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As someone going through the hiring process after completing the academy: The only way to stay encouraged is to focus on the end goal and work to be an even better candidate each time you apply somewhere. FWIW I have noticed a lot less people showing up a test days lately.

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Old 10-02-2012, 7:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeanCasey View Post
As someone going through the hiring process after completing the academy: The only way to stay encouraged is to focus on the end goal and work to be an even better candidate each time you apply somewhere. FWIW I have noticed a lot less people showing up a test days lately.

Sent from my SGH-T999 using Tapatalk 2
I'll let you know after our next recruitment goes through how the numbers are. We've actually gone up but the difference is the total numbers go up, the actual qualified guys go down.
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Old 10-02-2012, 9:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Notorious View Post
I'll let you know after our next recruitment goes through how the numbers are. We've actually gone up but the difference is the total numbers go up, the actual qualified guys go down.
Interesting. I know when I first started applying places there would be 50-100 guys per scheduled test and agencies would have multiple testing days to get everyone through. The last test I went to had a total of 12 people and that was the only test day. I was the only pre-service applicant. I'm in backgrounds with that agency now.
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  #20  
Old 10-02-2012, 6:09 PM
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I self sponsored right after the first Gulf War, and the LE job market was terrible then as it was now. A recruiter gave me the best advice ever: he sat me down, and he told me that he had my application package as 21 year old kid without life experience and he has an application package of a guy that served combat time in the Gulf. If I was in his shoes,who would I pick? He told m to go back to school and get a degree or join the military. I finished my BS, and a year later, got picked up by the Feds. My career has been awesome, and if I could remember his name and face, would shake his hand in a heartbeat!

My best advice is to not become discouraged; if this is hat you want, continue pushing. Also be flexible that you might have to leave Califonia because the job market there sucks.

Last edited by veeklog; 10-02-2012 at 6:13 PM..
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  #21  
Old 10-02-2012, 6:41 PM
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It's just a bad climate right now, economics are in the toilet and, truth be told, the public is not supporting public employees right now. In light of egregious stuff like Bell, Stockton etc. it's no wonder times are tough on the LEO job front. You also have to realize, you are competing against hundreds of laid off guys, some agencies cut all the way down to ten years of experience. IMHO, your best bet is to put yourself through the academy, there ARE departments hiring, they just have the luxury of being very, very, selective on who they pick up. Also, keep this thought in the back of your noggin, pension reform is most likely to lead to a mass exodus of Admin and street level folks bailing before they get boned on their retirement. Stay ready and do what you can to promote yourself. Best of luck, who knows, you may get my slot in a few months
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  #22  
Old 10-03-2012, 1:45 PM
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Putting yourself through an academy at a college may not be the best choice, but it can't hurt. Getting your POST certificate does not make you a peace officer and you would still have to go through the testing process and interviews to get hired by most departments. Some departments out there would probably also make you go through their academy anyways.

One thing that could damage your chances of getting in, is a large amount of disqualifications. The best way to start looking is to apply with a few agencies at the same time and see who bites. If you do not get in, wait a year or two then try again with different agencies.

If you apply for one, get DQ'd, then apply for another and get DQ'd, then apply for a 3rd, it will hurt your chances of getting hired. The more DQ's you have back to back, the harder it gets.

That all said, the economy sucks right now and departments are hiring less people right now, so they can afford to be as picky as they want. It should start picking up again soon.
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