Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Albany Citizens Police Academy - Graduation!

The Albany Citizens Police Academy Class 2011
The Albany Citizens Police Academy graduation took place last night.

The evening started with dinner catered by Izzy's Pizza. Mayor Sharon Konopa sat at the table where I was sitting while we ate. She chatted everyone at the table easily.

After dinner, Chief Boyd spoke briefly about the importance of the Albany Citizens Police Academy and its role in bridging the gap between the community and the department thanking the class for participating in the Academy. Lieutentant Casey Dorland then spoke briefly about how much the department appreciates those who participate in the class. Mayor Konopa spoke for a few minutes about how valued the police department is and the importance of the Citizens Academy. She encouraged class participants to spread what we learned from participating in the class.

Then it was my turn to speak. I'd spent some time reviewing the blogs I've written over the duration of the Albany Citizens Police Academy and making some notes. As I sat there, notes in front of me, I changed my mind. I looked around the room and decided I didn't want to give the talk I'd planned. I ditched my notes and followed my instincts. As I felt it was my responsibility to represent the class, I decided to include them by asking them to share their thoughts interspersed with my own comments. I had a little fun with it!

Larry Rowson spoke after me. He told us that he used to live in the spot where the building we were in stands. He talked about how well the instructors taught and how he enjoyed learning about how they did their jobs and the various responsibilities. He also offered a suggestion that the Citizens Academy include someone from the fire department in the future. I thought that was a good idea.

Posing with certifcate and mug
after graduation!
After Larry concluded his comments, we moved on to the graduation portion of the evening. Community Education Specialist Carmen Westfall, Chief Boyd, Captain Carter, and Captain Dorland stood in the front of the room. Carmen presented a certificate and class photo to each student, and Captain Carter presented a Albany Police Department coffee mug to each student. Handshakes all around!

After the presentation of the certificates, cake was served! Then we all spent a little time socializing and chatting! A very nice little party to end the Albany Citizens Police Academy!

Stay tuned for one more blog post about the Albany Citizens Police Academy! I have a few more thoughts I want to share regarding the class!

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