Alumni Association Picks up Where Fishers Police Citizen’s Academy Ends
Officers Ed Gebhart and Jamie Alvis have found a way to keep the training and camaraderie going for the graduates of the Fishers Police Department Citizen’s Academy. A new Citizen’s Academy Alumni Association has been up and running for almost one year.
Each year the Fishers Police Department graduates two Citizen’s Academy classes. During these classes Fishers residents get to go behind the scene of the Fishers Police Department and receive basic training on different scenarios that happen in the life of a police officer. The different trainings presented during Citizen’s Academy classes are things that the average resident of Fishers would not normally get to experience. This training can range from performing traffic stops and learning about narcotics to investigating domestic violence.
After graduating several academy classes, Officer Ed Gebhart decided that it would be beneficial for the Department to develop an Alumni Association to continue the officer-civilian relationship. “We started the Alumni because we wanted to open the department up to the citizens of Fishers that have taken the citizens academy. We envisioned an Alumni Association that could be utilized when the department needs community support. We also envisioned closer relationships between the community and the police officers that serve this community.” Gebhart stated. After getting the go-ahead from Chief George Kehl, he approached four graduated Alumni members to help him get the program going. These members formed a Board and created By-Laws for the group to follow.
To date there are 47 members of the Alumni Association and it is growing with each Citizen’s Academy graduating class. The age range of people eligible to be Alumni members include high school students through senior citizens. Along with different training classes, the Alumni members volunteer through the Fishers community during the Freedom Festival and Renaissance Faire, among other activities.
In September 2006 Officer Gebhart stepped down from his role in the Alumni and passed the torch to Officer Jamie Alvis. Officer Alvis is eager to build the Alumni Association and is currently working on many fun things for the Alumni group to become involved with. When asked what he likes best about being in charge of the Alumni Association Officer Alvis replied, “My favorite thing about running the Alumni Association is the camaraderie that I have developed with the Association. It is a true joy to be working with them. Everyone puts forth a great effort to be involved in volunteer projects with the police department. After each meeting we conduct tactical training in various situations. Everyone is eager to learn and to participate which allows us to have a lot of fun. The Citizen’s Academy is a great program and I’m glad we have the Association to allow that great program to flourish.”
In order to be a member of the Alumni Association, you must first graduate from a Citizen’s Academy class. If you are interested in taking a Citizen’s Academy class and then becoming a member of the Fishers Police Department Citizen’s Academy Alumni Association, please contact the Fishers Police Department at 595-3300.
Thank you to Charles B. Anderson for taking the picture.