Learning to be Law Enforcement

Local troop trains teens to be police officers

A co-ed branch of Boy Scouts of America, Fauquier County Sheriff’s Office Explorer Post 1077 provides teenagers age 14 and older with an authentic law enforcement experience. Senior Hannah Cordova has been involved with the program since 2016. She served as the troop leader and now serves as the troop’s Senior Explorer Advisor.

According to a recent article in Warrenton Lifestyle, the program was established in 1994, under the instruction of Lieutenant Welch. The troop took a hiatus from 2004 to 2016, while Welch worked in another jurisdiction.

Each cadet is required to pay a $30 annual registration fee, which includes both athletic training uniforms, a class B uniform, and a class A uniform. The attire is comparable to that of the Fauquier County Sheriff’s deputies.

The group meets two times a month and usually has a guest speaker. Recently, a fire investigator visited and educated Post 1077 on what he does for a living. Other guest speakers have included undercover agents, K9 deputies, homicide detectives, and firearm instructors.

“We do tons of community service outside of meetings, too,” Cordova said. “Each explorer must put in 50 hours of community service annually.”

Cordova ended 2016 with almost 100 hours of community service. The troop participates in civic services such as assisting parking for large events, making appearances in parades and at firehouse dinners, and helping create child identification cards. Cordova hopes to pursue a career in either forensic and legal psychology or clinical psychology after she attends Christopher Newport University.

“I really liked that the program allowed me to grow as a leader,” Cordova said. “I’ve held three leadership positions since I joined in 2016 and I really think that that’s a good life skill to have.”

Post 1077 isn’t only for students looking to work directly with law enforcement, though.

“There’s one guy in the troop who is also in ROTC,” Cordova said. “He wants to go into the military after getting a degree in neuroscience and become a neurosurgeon, I think. The troop can really be applied to any career path you’d like to pursue. For example, you could major in finance and end up helping with counterfeit prevention or with fraudulent cases.”

Cordova continually stressed the fact that, while Troop 1077 can obviously benefit you’re progression towards a multitude of careers, it builds you resume as a person more than your professional resume.

“Troop 1077 is a great way for students to make connections,” Cordova said. “It’s a great character building experience and it really helps shape your future, both as a person and professionally.”