The first step to becoming a certified police officer in Wisconsin is to find a job with an agency and from there go through the training process. In order to be hired, the state has established certain minimum standards that must be met. Some police agencies may have requirements above these minimums. You can find a list of Wisconsin police departments Here.
You also can find all the information you need to become a police officer in Wisconsin on the career page on the website of the Wisconsin Department of Justice Here.
Requirements & Qualifications
Wisconsin’s educational standards for law enforcement officers are stringent. In addition to requiring a high school diploma or GED equivalent, the state mandates that all police officers have a two year associate degree or a minimum of 60 fully accredited college level credits. The minimum age to become an officer in the state is 18, and U.S. citizenship and a valid Wisconsin driver’s license also is a minimum requirement.
Persons who have been convicted of any felony offense may not be hired as a police officer in Wisconsin. Conviction of any misdemeanor crime of domestic violence also is a disqualifying factor. That’s because, under federal law, individuals convicted of domestic violence crimes are prohibited from carrying firearms.
The Background Investigation Process
Applicants must undergo fingerprinting, with a search of local, state and national fingerprint records, a background investigation and other investigations that the hiring agency may deem necessary to ascertain loyalty to the United States or detect any conditions that would adversely affect performance as a law enforcement officer.
Medical Evaluation Process
All applicants must be free from any physical, emotional or mental condition which might adversely affect performance of duties as a law enforcement officer and they must undergo a physical exam to verify that they can meet physical standards required of the position. Drug testing also will be administered to all applicants for a variety of controlled substance.
Police Training Academy Standards
All candidates seeking certification must undergo basic police training. In Wisconsin this can be done prior to being hired by an agency, at your own cost, or it can be done after you are hired at the cost of the hiring agency. If you undergo the training before being hired by an agency, you have three years from the completion of the training to obtain a job. After that further training will be required.
The training curriculum, established by the Wisconsin Law Enforcement Standards Board (LESB) consists of 520 hours over 13 weeks for full-time students. Training can also be done part-time in a series of seven units taught over 12 to 18 months. You can find the curriculum Here.
The training is offered as a number of technical colleges certified by LESB. You can find a list of these schools here.
Average Salary For Cops in WI
According to the Bureau Of Labor Statistics (2011), a police officer in the state of Wisconsin makes between $49,430 – $54,230 per year. However the data collected by BLS is not very accurate because it does not take into account overtime pay or off duty gigs like private security work, special assignments and etc. These factors, if included in the data, would have drastically increased the average salary of a police officer in Wisconsin.
Police Officer Jobs in Wisconsin
There are several law enforcement job openings in Wisconsin. Simply visit our Career Job Opening Section or go to the official website of the agency you are interested in to complete an application of employment. Below is a list of law enforcement agencies in the state of Wisconsin.