Since its inception in 1997, hundreds of grade 11 and 12 students have participated in the VPD Student Challenge – an eight-day “youth police academy.” The program, which runs during the school Spring Break, includes classroom work in areas such as legal studies, investigation and patrol, and human relations. Successful applicants are also involved in a rigorous physical training program, which includes the POPAT (Police Officer’s Physical Abilities Test), daily runs, team challenges, control tactics and drill instruction.
Over the years, many of the participants have chosen a career in law enforcement. Brittany, a 2015 participant of the Student Challenge, is currently a first year criminology student at SFU. Brittany was already taking criminology in high school, but her participation in the Program reinforced her desire to continue her studies in law.
The program’s success can be accounted to the passionate VPD members that participate and volunteer their time to inspire the youth that partake in the challenge each year.
Registration for the 2016 Student Challenge is now open. Please visit the VPD website for more information and how to register.