On June 29, 2007, 31 Rahway children between the ages of 11 and 15 graduated from the sixth annual Youth Police Academy, which is run by police officers assigned to various departments within the Rahway Police Department. The Youth Police Academy is designed to provide young adults with a better understanding of the role of police in today’s society. Youth Academy “cadets” are exposed to some of the training, procedures, and technology utilized by police officers on a daily basis. Our goal is to develop a better rapport with the children in the community by breaking down the barriers that exist between police officers and teens.

The weeklong program exposes the participants to many areas of law enforcement such as accident investigation and crime scene investigation. The cadets also are educated in areas such as alcohol and drug awareness, gang awareness, K-9, physical fitness, and water safety. The session culminated in a graduation ceremony held at the Rahway Municipal Court Room. During the week long course, participants tested their physical agility by participating daily in “PT” (physical training), which consisted of pushups, sit ups, running, and a variety of other physical agility tests. The cadets were then rewarded for their hard work and dedication with a formal graduation ceremony.

Awards were presented to the following Youth Police Academy graduates for their achievements in these categories:

Top Cadet: Cheyenne Winstead
Top Essays: Emily Gottlick, Emily Nicol, and Grace Gottlick
Top Physical Training: Joshua Parham and Johnna Booth
Instructor’s Choice Award: Jonathan Wojtasik
Most Improved: Zachary Lapoma

2007 Youth Academy Graduating Class