The Public Safety Cadets program is a career focused mentoring program for young adults between the ages of 14-21 who are interested in a career in law enforcement. The goal is to transition the public safety cadet into an employment position within the criminal justice field. This is accomplished by providing knowledge, skills and practical experiences through education and training delivered by public safety professionals that build character, physical fitness and respect for the rule of law.
The St. Petersburg Police Public Safety Cadet Program was initially created as the St. Petersburg Police Explorers in 1969. The program was run under the Boy Scouts of America - Learning for Life division through 2021. In 2022, the program joined the Public Safety Cadets organization and continued to be sponsored by the St. Petersburg Police Department. Unit #1969 was intentionally chosen as our unit designator as a tribute to the year the program was initially founded.
Our members get the chance to work directly with various employees of the department to include police officers, communications professionals and forensic technicians. There are opportunities to go on ride-alongs, shadow in the emergency communications center, receive police training, meet new friends, and feel good about helping out in your community. Additionally, there are a number of scholarships that are made available to assist with continuing education costs.
Young adults, male and female, are encouraged to join. You must meet these criteria:
- Must be in school and completed the eighth grade and must be at least 14 years-of-age, but not older than 19 years-of-age.
- While being enrolled in a high school, you must maintain a 2.0 GPA. (Must have a 2.5 GPA to participate in ride-alongs and firearms).
- Pass a thorough background check
- Uniforms and other privileges are earned after being a member in good standing for a minimum of four months
Join us at one of our Monday night meetings 6:00 pm-8:30 pm. We will give you an informational packet on your first night. Contact Officer Aaron Waldo for a location.
An applicant must attend four consecutive Monday night meetings. At the fourth meeting, the applicant will receive an oral interview board. Their peers, along with the Officer Waldo, will decide acceptance.