Public safety academy has record number of applicants

November 5, 2019: Last week, the first of two application periods for the July 2020 Public Safety Academy closed out with just over 1000 applications submitted to the Trooper Recruitment Unit. The large swell of applicants is credited to a recruitment graphic that went viral on Instagram, as well as on-going advertising efforts.

“We didn’t even realize what happened at first. All of a sudden our office turned into a massive call center,” said Lt. Derek DeGraaf, Recruitment Supervisor for the Alaska State Troopers. “Even the company that does our written testing called us and asked what happened because they were overwhelmed and inundated by people setting up proctored written tests.”

While the number of applications was enormous, it is too soon to tell how many people will make it through the intensive background checks. Vetting applicants is a six month process and before applicants are invited to fill out the questionnaires, they must pass the written exam and demonstrate on their initial application that they meet the minimum standards for hire.

The projection for the number of recruits at the July 2020 Academy is for 25-30 attendees just for DPS. A second hiring cycle has been opened for the same July 2020 training academy and will remain open until January 31, 2020.

“Even with the large application pool, we will be sending out a lot of rejections. This is due to the applicant not having passed the written test yet,” said Lt. DeGraaf. “Many people will be encouraged to resubmit their application in the hiring cycle that just opened because they meet the minimums but hadn’t had the opportunity to schedule their written exam.”

“Continuing to fill ranks to increase number of troopers statewide will help us to bolster our focus of increasing public safety in rural Alaska, which the Dunleavy administration has committed to doing,” said Amanda Price, Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety. “We are happy to report that this focus we’ve put on recruitment is paying off and we look forward to putting more recruits through our academy and getting them out to serve the people of Alaska.”

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