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NRCC students pause for a photo during their time with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Citizen’s Academy. Pictured (from left) are Adam Otey, Christian Shinn, Aaron Walters, Sheriff Hank Partin, Wesley Hedrick, Cody Hardwick and Cody Sellors.

Six New River Community College students recently completed the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Citizen’s Academy. Cody Hardwick, Wesley Hedrick, Adam Otey, Cody Sellors, Christian Shinn and Aaron Walters participated in the 10-week academy as a two-credit elective.

“My sincere appreciation and thanks go to the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office for providing this opportunity for my students,” said Dennis DuBuc, NRCC associate professor for administration of justice. “I appreciate that this group of law enforcement professionals chose to provide leadership and training for my students, along with valuable experience.”

The Citizen’s Academy gives participants the opportunity to experience conditions similar to the training the deputies receive and shows deputies’ daily operational duties. The students said they were interested in using the academy as their supervised study because of the real-world experience it would give them outside of the classroom.

Academy participants learn about divisions and functions including crime scene investigation, evidence, patrol, shooting range, corrections, K9, SWAT, civil process, court security and enforcement of criminal and traffic laws.

Students agreed that this experience reinforced what they learned in the classroom but taught them new things as well. They said this opportunity gave them the chance to see the application of the law, talk with current deputies, and learn directly about the New River Valley region, which is helpful because several are planning to stay in the area for their careers.

“It is my hope that these young men will be able to use this experience to the benefit of the people in the communities they will serve when they join the ranks of law enforcement professionals,” said DuBuc.

Submitted by Kelly Kaiser

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