WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., Jan. 10, 2019 — One hundred and eighty young people, considering a career in law enforcement, will come to campus to take part in the annual West Virginia Sheriffs’ Youth Leadership Academy next summer as the annual event moves to the hilltop.
The academy is a 6-day residential summer camp program for high school students from throughout the state and is scheduled for July 7 – 12, 2019.
Representatives from sheriff’s offices across the state were on campus recently planning the summer academy.
“At our initial meeting, we set up an agenda. It will be six days of learning and includes a variety of activities, like mock crime scene investigations and canine demonstrations, along with campfires and games,” Ohio County Sheriff Tom Howard said. “To be able to bring this successful academy to the Wheeling area is really important.”
It seeks to deter risk-taking behavior patterns by introducing the participants to recreation alternatives and educating them on the negative consequences of drugs, alcohol and violence, according to Sheriff Howard.
Participants arrive after lunch on Sunday, July 7 and depart for home in the afternoon of Friday, July 12. A graduation ceremony will be held on Friday to conclude the academy week.
“This is a great experience for youth, they learn about careers in public service and interact with law enforcement, plus they find out how law enforcement work,” he added.
“We’ll have fire fighters here also, we’ll have EMTs, all sorts of first responders. They’ll meet and interact with the youngsters, with the goal that some of them may even go into law enforcement or public safety one day.”
Formerly, the academy often took place in the southern part of the state.
“I love it that it’s moving to the Northern Panhandle,” Howard said. “That’s why I do this work. I do it for the youth; I want to help them to interact with law enforcement and safety professionals. And I want to showcase Ohio County.”
The academy is open to both boys and girls in public or private schools who have attained at least a 2.0 on their most recent report card. There is a $75 fee, however Ohio County Sheriff Office will cover that cost for participants from Ohio County.
Acceptance is competitive based upon the number of applicants and applications must be completed by May 3, 2019. To find out more please visit wvsheriff.org or click here.