Police Academy Intern Program - Southwestern Illinois College

Training Civilians Before Employment

The Illinois Law Enforcement Training Act allows civilians to be trained and certified as law enforcement officers by a certified Illinois police academy before they are hired by law enforcement agencies. Traditionally, recruits are hired by a law enforcement agency, then sent to a police academy for training. Civilians now have the ability to receive the same training as sworn police officers prior to service; and agencies will have the opportunity to hire academy trained individuals ready for service.

The basic training program

  • Intensive academic and physical training.
  • Instructors are employed in the field of law enforcement.
  • Courses include all aspects of entry-level law enforcement including legal issues, citizen interaction, communications, investigation and state-of-the-art firearms training and defensive tactics.

Available only at SWIC

The Intern application process has currently been approved by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board only at Southwestern Illinois Police Academy.

How does the Intern Training Program work?

Your application will be reviewed and provided all minimum requirements are met, you will participate in the following selection procedures:

  • Physician Certification of ability to complete the Peace Officer Wellness Evaluation Report
  • Test and Training.
  • Drug Screening
  • Physical Ability – POWER Test
  • Cognitive Test
  • Psychological Test
  • Background Investigation
  • Oral Interview

Law Enforcement Training Program Requirements

  • Minimum 21 Years of Age
  • High School Diploma or GED
  • United States Citizenship
  • Health Insurance
  • Illinois Firearms Owner Identification (FOID) card
  • Valid Illinois Driver’s License, not revoked or suspended
  • No felony convictions
  • Illinois Statute: 50 ILCS 705.6 (e) No applicant will be admitted to a certified academy unless the applicant is a person of good character and has not been convicted of a felony offense or a crime involving moral turpitude under the laws of this state or any other state, which if committed in this state would be punishable as a felony or a crime of moral turpitude.
  • Under Federal Law, conviction of any offense as a result of domestic violence incident prohibits possession of a firearm, resulting in automatic ineligibility for hire as a police officer.

For more information about the Police Academy Intern Program, please contact Deputy Director Brandon Dugger at 618-641-4912 or by e-mail at brandon.dugger@swic.edu or visit the Police Academy site.

Career Opportunities


Sheriff’s Deputy

While completion of training does not guarantee employment with a law enforcement agency, many police agencies have expressed a strong interest in selecting employees who have completed the Basic Law Enforcement Training at a certified academy and successfully completed the State Certification Examination.


The Economic Research Institute reported the average starting salary for a police officer was $18,500. The average salary in the career field is $29,500. The average for experienced officers is $43,500. According to the American Federation of Police, some officers earned more than $85,000 based on rank.

Code of Ethics

The men and women who are admitted into police training have been carefully selected to function in the important role of law enforcement officers. This is a trusted position that requires exemplary behavior on the part of those chosen to protect and serve the citizens of their community. The character, integrity and honesty of officers of the law must be beyond reproach.

The Southwestern Illinois College Police Academy “Expects the Best” of its faculty and staff and of those who attend its basic police training program. The academy demands the trainees conduct themselves at all times in a manner that brings respect to themselves, their department and their community.

Graduation Requirements

Upon successful completion of the program, the student will earn 24 hours of college credit and be awarded a Basic law Enforcement Certificate from the Police Academy. The recruit will be allowed to take the Illinois Police Officer’s State Certification Test.

State Regulatory Requirements

Meets Requirements in

This program MEETS the State educational requirements for licensure, certification or registry in: Illinois

Does not Meet Requirements in

This program DOES NOT MEET the State educational requirements for licensure, certification or registry in: Missouri

No determination In

No determination has been made whether this program meets the State educational requirements for licensure, certification or registry in: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, American Samoa, District of Columbia, Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Marshall Islands, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands


Changes from Prior Year: N/A