NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - Sixth and seventh graders were able to get a taste of what it would be like to work for a police department at the New Providence Police Department's 2nd Annual Youth Police Academy held July 24 through July 28.

On Friday, the 27 cadets, up from 11 that attended the first year, received certificates at a graduation ceremony for completing the one week camp.

Each day, their training included many military drills along with physical activities led by the officers. Contributing to the success of the program were demonstrations brought in by outside departments including the NPFD; EMS; Union County SWAT Team;  NJSP Aviation Unit; Union County Bomb Squad, who discussed the dangers of fireworks and demonstrated police activity involving the robot; Union County Sheriff K-9 Unit; and United States Federal Bureau of Investigation to name a few.  They also practiced handcuffing and spent a day at the John H. Stamler Police Academy of Union County in Scotch Plains where they learned firearms safety and familiarization (through use of a simulation machine).

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The kids got to see all different sides of the law to give the cadets a firsthand look at what goes into being in law enforcement. 

Not only does the Youth Police Academy engages children to think about law enforcement as a career, it also is important for the youth to build a rapport and make a connection with the police officers. This Police Youth Academy gives kids a better perspective of police work, opens up dialog and builds a relationship between the youth an police.  "We might recruit some of these kids to get interest out there for the future," said Academy Director, Lt. Justine Kennedy.

Lieutenant Kennedy and Detective Michael Hand organized the Academy with the help of Corp. Chad Wilson, Officers T.J. Hoppe and Nicholas Guererro and Junior Instructor Elijah Montanez and the many outside departments.  

The New Providence Police Department thanks their sponsors for the support including TransOptions, Zita's Ice Cream, Jersey Mike's Subs, Coppola Ristorante and the New Providence PBA Local #132.

Each child left with a gift card for ice cream at Zita's.

Visit and Like the New Providence Police and New Providence Office of Emergency Management facebook page for more Academy photos and updated information from the NPPD.