Kent State hiring new police officers

Caitlyn Callahan

The Kent State University Police Services is a year-round State of Ohio trained and commissioned law enforcement agency responsible for the protection of lives and property for the campus. They are required to enforce the law and University Administrative Code provisions, maintain order, prevent crime, make arrests and perform related work, including:

  • Unlocking vehicles
  • Transferring University funds among facilities
  • Providing first aid or emergency transportation
  • Advising members of the community on law, policy and feature of the university
  • University officers patrol an assigned area on foot or in vehicle, check buildings for fire, burglary and other disturbances, investigate and report suspicious behavior, and conduct general patrol for detection and prevention of criminal acts.

    Minimum qualifications required:

  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be at least 21 years of age
  • Possess a valid Ohio driver’s license
  • No serious criminal offenses
  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Special requirements:

  • Meet minimum physical fitness requirements
  • Possess basic typing and computer skills
  • Undergo pre-employment drug testing
  • No use of tobacco products while on-duty

The Kent State Police Department currently has 28 officers and is looking to hire three new patrol officers in upcoming months.

The positions became available after one officer retired and two transferred to other locations.

Michquel Penn said anyone over the age of 21 can apply, and Police Academy experience or a degree is not necessary. She said there are already a number of former Kent State students working for the department, and current students can apply.

“If a candidate meets our requirements and they are one of the candidates we are considering then we can hire them just like anybody else,” she said.

Penn said the hiring process is just that; a process. The department will be accepting applications until Feb. 25, a written test will then be given March 3, and the physical test will be March 31.

She said after the written exam, they will take a certain percentile from that group to move on to the physical fitness part of the test. According to a pamphlet about the fitness exam given to applicants, the test is designed to test muscular strength, endurance and aerobic capacity.

The test consists of having to do a certain number of sit-ups and push-ups in a minute, and running a timed mile and a half.

Penn said after the fitness test, the people that pass will move on to the next portion, the Assessment Center.

“They will look at things such as how [the candidate] will respond to certain situations on campus,” she said. They may also give mock situations or police reports to see how they respond to situations on campus and to test their writing skills.

“Or, they may sit in front of a panel and be asked different questions to gauge what type of person they are and how they will react in those situations,” she said.

Next, after the number of applicants is narrowed down even more, Penn said they will start bringing those people in for interviews. They will then go through a medical examination, a psychological assessment, and a polygraph examination.

“Those are really in depth to make sure the candidate we choose doesn’t have a background that would hinder them from being a police officer with us,” Penn said.

In order to apply for the position, Penn said everything is online on the Kent State Human Resources website. She said there is information about the process, what they have to go through before the hiring takes place, what documents they need, and information about the physical test.

Steven Steele, police officer for the Kent State Police Department, graduated from Kent State in 2008 and has been working for the department for almost two years.

“I wanted to work at the Kent State Police Department because I believe in the core values that the department takes pride in,” he said. “I love the fact that I enjoy going to work every day and look forward to working with the university community.”

Contact Caitlyn Callahan at [email protected].