The RCPD Police Explorers program (cadets) is for young men and women between the ages of 15 and 21. Our purpose is to bring a character building, citizenship training and fitness program to the youth of America. The Explorer Posts are organized by businesses, industries, governmental agencies, churches, schools, civic clubs and community organizations. They provide adult volunteer leaders, program resources and meeting facilities. These posts specialize in a variety of career and recreational programs. They provide a service of social, citizenship, outdoor, career and fitness activities.

Career surveys conducted in high schools throughout the country demonstrate a significant level of student interest in law enforcement and criminal justice. Young people want hands-on experience, practical knowledge and usable career information. Exploring seeks to match interested youth with adults who will share their knowledge and skills.
What Do Cadets Do?
Rapid City Police Explorers participate in numerous functions to provide service, social, citizenship, outdoor, career and fitness activities. Explorers may go on overnight fishing and camping trips, all-day excursions to the water slide, skiing trips and community service projects. Explorers also compete with other posts on a national level every other year. Competition events include crisis intervention, robbery in progress, hostage negotiation, search and arrest, crime prevention, pistol shooting, misdemeanor and felony traffic stops, and accident investigation.
The ride-along program is a popular Explorer activity. Eligible Explorers must be at least 15 years old and successfully complete training provided by the Rapid City Police Department. While riding, Explorers will learn police procedures and assist officers with their duties, using the radio, directing traffic, and recording information. This program offers hands-on exposure to law enforcement.
Senior Cadet Program
The Rapid City Police Cadet Program also offers the classification of Senior Cadet. This is a position obtained through a letter of application to your Cadet Commander, and is only open to Cadets ages 19-21 who are not on probation of any form. The applicant must show enthusiasm towards law enforcement and dedication toward the Cadet program. Senior Cadet is not a rank, but a privilege.
If your application is accepted, you will receive a different badge and the chance to attend training with the Rapid City Police Department. This includes advanced training in Pressure Point Control Tactics (PPCT), Emergency Vehicle Operation Control (EVOC), Firearms, and Constitutional Law, among other areas.

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