After 26 weeks of pushing their physical and mental limits, the Tustin Police recruits stood with 36 of their colleagues to receive their badges June 9 as they graduated from the Orange County Sheriff’s Regional Training Academy.
Tustin PD’s Ismael Aurelus, Leah Barrett and David Valencia proudly transformed from recruits to officers in front of hundreds as they walked across the stage to accept their badges from the Chief of Police.
(Read about their academy journey HERE.)
Family and friends, including several who traveled from out of state, helped pin the recruits’ badges, with Valencia’s 4-year-old daughter claiming the most endearing moment of the ceremony as she pinned her father’s badge before giving him a hug and a kiss.
After the graduation, Tustin Chief Charles Celano held an intimate ceremony to welcome the city’s newest officers with an official swearing in.
“Tustin PD is a family,” Celano told the recruits. “We know each other and we take care of each other. Through thick and thin, we will be there for you.”
The new officers currently are in Tustin PD’s training program where they will work with a field training officer for 16 weeks before heading to patrol on their own.
Here’s what they hope for in the future of their careers:
First month: “I want to continue to learn to be a good police officer for the city of Tustin. I want to take in all of the wealth of knowledge that my superiors have to offer me.”
First year: “I want to continue to grow and mature. I want my partners to know they can depend on me.”
First decade: “I wish to move up in the ranks of the department and work in a specialty unit.”
First month: “With the base level of knowledge that the academy has provided me with, I hope to continue to learn. Through the Field Training program I want to absorb as much knowledge from my FTO’s, as they have many years and experience on the job.”
First year: “I will focus my efforts on passing the probation period and hope to become a successful addition to the Tustin Police Department.”
First decade: “I believe there will always be things to learn as you continue into this career and I hope to become proficient in the functions of a police officer. “
First month: “I hope to learn and obtain the tools needed to be a successful police officer for the city of Tustin.”
First year: “I want to pass my probation and join the gang unit.”
First decade: “I would like to become a field training officer and promote to sergeant.”