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Career and Education Opportunities for Policemen in Birmingham, Alabama

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for policemen in the Birmingham, Alabama area. Currently, 9,860 people work as policemen in Alabama. This is expected to grow by 14% to 11,200 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for policemen are expected to grow by about 8.7%. In general, policemen patrol assigned areas to enforce laws and ordinances, regulate traffic, and arrest violators.

The income of a policeman is about $17 per hour or $35,670 per year on average in Alabama. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $24 per hour or $51,410 yearly on average. Policemen earn less than people working in the category of Police and Security generally in Alabama and more than people in the Police and Security category nationally. People working as policemen can fill a number of jobs, such as: state trooper, police inspector, and constable.

There are two schools within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can study to be a policeman, among fifteen schools of higher education total in the Birmingham area. Given that the most common education level for policemen is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a policeman if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Policeman

Policeman video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, policemen patrol assigned areas to enforce laws and ordinances, regulate traffic, and arrest violators.

Policemen record facts to ready reports that document incidents and efforts. They also identify and arrest suspects and perpetrators of criminal acts. Equally important, policemen have to track and investigate suspicious persons and situations and unusual or illegal activity in patrol area. They are often called upon to provide for public safety by maintaining order, responding to emergencies, protecting people, and promoting good community relations. They are expected to testify in court to present evidence or act as witness in traffic and criminal cases. Finally, policemen relay complaint and emergency-request data to appropriate agency dispatchers.

Every day, policemen are expected to be able to respond quickly in general. They need to evaluate problems as they arise. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for policemen to evaluate complaint and emergency-request data to establish response requirements. They are often called upon to process prisoners, and ready and maintain records of prisoner bookings and prisoner status during booking and pre-trial process. They also act as official escorts. Somewhat less frequently, policemen are also expected to examine public establishments to insure adherence to rules and regulations.

Policemen sometimes are asked to track traffic to insure motorists observe traffic rules and exhibit safe driving procedures. And finally, they sometimes have to inspect facts of incidents to establish if criminal acts or statute violations were involved.

Like many other jobs, policemen must have exceptional integrity and have strong self control in the face of challenging situations.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Birmingham include:

  • Chief of Police. Supervise and coordinate activities of members of police force.
  • Correctional Officer. Guard inmates in penal or rehabilitative institution in accordance with established regulations and procedures. May guard prisoners in transit between jail, courtroom, or other point. Includes deputy sheriffs and police who spend the majority of their time guarding prisoners in correctional institutions.
  • Criminal Investigator. Investigate alleged or suspected criminal violations of Federal, state, or local laws to determine if evidence is sufficient to recommend prosecution.
  • Customs Inspector. Investigate and inspect persons, common carriers, and merchandise, arriving in or departing from the United States or between states to detect violations of immigration and customs laws and regulations.
  • Police Officer. Conduct investigations to prevent crimes or solve criminal cases.
  • Police Records Officer. Collect evidence at crime scenes, classify and identify fingerprints, and photograph evidence for use in criminal and civil cases.
  • Private Investigator. Detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishment, or seek, examine, and compile information for client.
  • Sheriff. Enforce law and order in rural or unincorporated districts or serve legal processes of courts. May patrol courthouse, guard court or grand jury, or escort defendants.
  • Transportation Security Officer. Inspect baggage or cargo and screen passengers to detect and prevent potentially dangerous objects from being transported into secure areas or onto aircraft.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Policeman Training

Jefferson State Community College - Birmingham, AL

Jefferson State Community College, 2601 Carson Rd, Birmingham, AL 35215-3098. Jefferson State Community College is a medium sized college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 8,718 students. Jefferson State Community College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Criminal Justice/Police Science which graduated nine and thirteen students respectively in 2008.

Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus - Birmingham, AL

Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus, 3060 Wilson Rd SW, Birmingham, AL 35221-1717. Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus is a small college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,507 students. Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus has an associate's degree program in Criminal Justice/Police Science which graduated five students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Oxygen Administration: Prepares laypersons and professional rescuers with the knowledge and skills needed to know when and how to use supplemental oxygen and breathing devices.

For more information, see the American Red Cross website.

Police Service Dog Certification: This test is to determine if the police service dog is capable of performing on and off lead obedience exercises.

For more information, see the Eastern States Working Dog Association, INC website.

LICENSES

Law Enforcement Personnel

Licensing agency: AL Peace Officers Standards & Training Commission
Address: P O Box 300075, Montgomery, AL 36130-0075

Phone: (334) 242-4045
Website: AL Peace Officers Standards & Training Commission

LOCATION INFORMATION: Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama photo by Eric_in_SF

Birmingham is located in Jefferson County, Alabama. It has a population of over 228,798, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Birmingham, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Birmingham cost $187,300 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Birmingham, down from two hundred thirty-two the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Birmingham are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 24 minutes. More than 18.5% of Birmingham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Birmingham is 12.5%, which is greater than Alabama's average of 10.7%.

The percentage of Birmingham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Williams Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Westminister Presbyterian Church and West End Methodist Church are all churches located in Birmingham. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Birmingham is home to the Mineral Park Municipal Golf Course and the Cooper Green Golf Course as well as Avondale Mills Park and Smithfield Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Acipco Shopping Center, Altadena Square Shopping Center and Parkway East Huffman Shopping Center. Visitors to Birmingham can choose from Marriott Hotel Birmingham, Rime Garden Extended Stay Suites and Studioplus for temporary stays in the area.