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Rick123

Joining the police with a degree

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Hi guys,

 

I've just finished my degree and I'm thinking about joining my local police force as an officer.

 

I'm currently in the process of becoming a special which should give me a good taste for it, however I have a few questions in the meantime...

 

1) Does having a good degree behind you carry much weight in terms of your career progression? 

 

2) Roughly how many years would you need to spend in uniform before having a realistic chance of being able to specialise?

 

3) Once you have specialised, is it possible to move from one branch to another?

 

Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

 

Many thanks!

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1 - yes no maybe

2 - 2 years

3 - yes.

 

A degree won't make any difference whilst you are a PC or sergeant but it may start to make a difference from CI and above depending on the degree and what the current buzz words are.

 

You'll be a probationer for 2 years and during that period you can't apply for specialist positions so your dreams of traffic, firearms, CID or neighbourhood will have to be on hold for at least that long.  Also some specialisms have to be reached through other specialisms as a stepping stone.  Special branch or CID for example will mean becoming a DC first and spending time or other more general investigation units first whilst you gain experience and contacts.

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I don't wish to be disparaging but having a degree does not necessarily mean you will be a good police officer. It will help, but what happens when you put the uniform on, go out and do the job where all parties are satisfactorily dealt with and the end result is correct is when you will realise that you can make it.

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 Of course, in current times you could join direct entry as an Inspector or Superintendent if career progression is all you care about, it would appear to make little difference that you'd have no experience or know what you're talking about. On the back of being a special, who are currently getting more specialist training in an effort to retain them than regular officers get, you should be in good stead to jump the queue. Just remember in 20-30 years time when the government of the day are political point scoring by micro analysing, with the benefit of hindsight, on the spot decisions made at the time whose heads it is that roll.

 

 My advice would be don't do it. It's not like it is on TV. There must be better jobs you can get with your degree.

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You could wait until a graduate scheme opens up. If successful you get fast tracked to inspector and I believe in some cases superintendent.

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