Is becoming a transit police officer right for me?
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How to become a Transit Police Officer
Education and experience guidelines depend on the employer, but most transit police officer jobs only require a high school diploma or equivalent. Many transit companies want applicants to be at least 21 years of age with a requirement that the candidate holds a valid driver’s license. The applicants must take and pass a written exam, pass a very thorough background check, a psychiatric evaluation, and in some cases, a lie detector test before being considered for a position as an officer.
Candidates for this job should be in good physical shape to be able to withstand the often gruelling physical aspects of the job. In the case that a criminal must be apprehended on foot, an officer may have to run long distances, and they may have to restrain a suspect while waiting for backup. A candidate should not only be fit to run long distances, they must also have a good deal of strength.
Candidates must also be able to wield a certain amount of authority and be prepared to exert that authority in necessary situations. Like any other police officer, they must be able to take charge in stressful environments while still keeping their cool to do the job correctly and without unnecessary aggression.
Transit officers should have excellent person-to-person communication skills as well as excellent oral and written abilities. These skills will be necessary for explaining scenarios and writing reports. Communication is key to get all of the information from a suspect. These skills are also important when speaking with witnesses and victims of crimes who often need to feel as though they are being supported rather than interrogated. Good interpersonal skills are also necessary for the teamwork required for a job as a transit police officer that works closely with other members of the force.