DCCC staff joins police cadets on final run

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College staff members Darren Lipscomb (in suit & tie) Director of Outreach, Recruitment and Enrollment Services; Sara Steinman (far left in gray t-shirt), Director of Wellness, Athletics and Recreation; Mitch Murtha, Vice President, Recruitment and Enrollment Management (right in blue t-shirt behind instructors in yellow t-shirts); and Simuelle Myers, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer (right, in mask), joined the cadets and their instructors in a portion of their run to offer encouragement and support. Additional College staff also cheered on the cadets at the finish line.

Several staff members at Delaware County Community College  joined soon-to-be graduates of the College’s Municipal Police Academy (MPA) at the Marple Campus in running the last part of their training to congratulate and encourage the cadets to use what they have learned to effectively engage all the communities they are sworn to protect, Monday. Additional staff also were on hand to show support and cheer the cadets across the finish line.

Due to unforeseen circumstances, President Dr. L. Joy Gates Black, who had expected to join the cadets on a portion of their run, was unable to participate. Dr. Karen Kozachyn, Vice President of Workforce and Economic Development, the division that oversees the MPA, spoke to the cadets on behalf of President Gates Black.

“Dr. Gates Black, who really wanted to be here today to share this moment with you, sends her congratulations,” said Dr. Kozachyn, who also was joined by MPA Director William Davis.

Due to COVID-19 safety precautions, the College, which received a state waiver to hold in-person, MPA classes during the pandemic, will only graduate 21 cadets on June 10 this year. However, a year ago in the midst of the pandemic during their online induction ceremony, Dr. Gates Black told the cadets that their training at the MPA would help them when they go out into the community to handle incidents that sometimes can require sensitivity and skilled communication.

In her 2020 address, Dr. Gates Black spoke of the cadets’ distinctive calling: “It is my hope that your police training and involvement with the College community will help you always remember that your sworn duty will be to serve and protect all, and that you will do so with fairness and compassion.”

While the 2021 MPA class is one of the smallest ever to graduate in the 44-year history of the MPA, it is diverse and includes seven students of color and two women. By comparison, in June 2018, the MPA broke a College record when it graduated 12 female cadets in a class of 48 students, the most female students to have ever graduated at one time. The previous year, 10 women graduated, which at that time broke a record, marking the most female cadets to have graduated the MPA at one time.

The cadets are required to complete a rigorous, 920-hour curriculum that includes extensive instruction in firearms, physical fitness, self-defense, Homeland Security, scenario training and practical exercises.

Delaware County Community College’s MPA conducts training for the Municipal Police Officer’s Education and Training Commission program in accordance with Pennsylvania Legislative Act 120. The MPA has been serving the community since 1977, and also conducts mandatory Act 180 in-service training for current municipal police officers. More than 95 percent of the municipal police officers in Delaware County and more than 75 percent of the police officers in Chester County are Delaware County Community College MPA graduates.

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