There are five Explorer Posts in Harris County, one assigned to each Patrol District.
The Sheriff’s Office currently has 8 Explorer post located around Harris County.Exploring program is for young people between the ages of 14 (and have completed the 8th grade) and 21 years old, who are interested in a career in law enforcement, namely in policing. There are currently more than 3,000 Law Enforcement Explorer Posts throughout the United States.
Law Enforcement Exploring provides educational training programs for young adults on the purposes, mission, and objectives of law enforcement. The program provides career orientation experiences, leadership opportunities, and community service activities. The primary goals of the program are to help young adults choose a career path within law enforcement and to challenge them to become responsible citizens of their communities and the nation.
Agencies from federal, state, and local levels coordinate the Law Enforcement Exploring programs throughout the United States. The majority of the community programs are managed by local police departments, including Sheriffs, Chiefs of Police, and State Police. In addition, many federal agencies offer their support. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC), Federal Air Marshal Service, US Army Military Police, US Customs and Border Protection Service, US Marshals Service, US Postal Inspection Service, and US Secret Service provide national programs, scholarships, workshops, and literature. Also, Law Enforcement Exploring is supported by the National Sheriffs’ Association and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.
Nationally, over 33,000 Explorers and 8,425 adult volunteers participate in Law Enforcement Exploring. The program highlights include: the National Law Enforcement Exploring Leadership Academies, ride-along, career achievement awards, National Law Enforcement Exploring Conferences, and scholarship opportunities.
The Explorer students will be trained to perform certain police functions and see how they utilize their training in mock calls and in Explorer competitions, held throughout the United States, to win awards and to be eligible for college scholarships. Explorers also can earn certain Law Enforcement Proficiency Awards which are acknowledged by all the Explorer posts operated by local, state and national law enforcement agencies. These recognize community service, crime prevention, law enforcement service, law enforcement training, firearms training, emergency preparedness, tenure, and Explorer of the Year and the awards are intended to be worn only on the Explorer uniform, similar to our certified personnel. This program also gives the Explorer a first hand look at what it takes to be a police officer and it lets the kids decide early on if this is the career they want to pursue.
The Explorer program, which is an umbrella program through the Boy Scouts of America and is affiliated with Learning for Life, will have two lead advisors in each Post (Patrol District Office) and other Sheriff and civilian assistant advisors to help us get this program up and running.
How many times do you think police officers have been approached by a young adult, kids, teenagers, both boys and girls who confess to us an interest in becoming a police officer when they grow up? It happens a lot. We normally just try to give them advise like stay out of trouble, don’t use drugs and to take certain classes like typing for the paperwork, to take Criminal Justice Programs in high school or college or ROTC for the discipline and military training. Now, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office will be offering this program to these young adults interested in Law Enforcement as a career.
Harris County Deputies are now ready, willing and eager to teach these kid what law Enforcement is all about.