OJP Press Release letterhead

Friday, November 7, 2003
Contact: Sheila Jerusalem

15 Officers Graduate From Justice Department Program

     FORSYTH, GEORGIA – With the graduation today of 15 police cadets, the Georgia Police Corps has contributed a total of 54 highly trained Police Corps officers to community patrol throughout Georgia. Georgia is one of 27 states that recruit and train college graduates to serve four years as community police officers through a program funded by the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP).

     “Through their successful completion of the Police Corps training program, today’s graduates have proven themselves to be prepared with the skills and knowledge to enter one of the most difficult and challenging jobs imaginable, yet one of the most rewarding they will ever find,” said Deborah J. Daniels, Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs. “These officers are now part of the noble tradition of service to Georgia’s citizens and communities.”

     The Police Corps is a competitive college scholarship program for students who agree to work in a state or local police force for at least four years. Scholarship funds cover education expenses including tuition, fees, books, supplies, transportation, room and board and miscellaneous expenses.

     Today’s graduates of the Georgia Police Corps program will join 11 of the state’s local law enforcement agencies. These departments, which include the Albany Police Department, Athens/Clarke County Police Department, Barton County Police Department, Carrollton Police Department, Cobb County Police Department, College Park Police Department, Columbia County Sheriff’s Department, Dekalb County Police Department, Henry County Police Department, Rome Police Department, and the Suwanee Police Department, will assign the new officers to community patrol within their jurisdictions.

     The graduating Police Corps officers are: Elizabeth Breiner of Athens; James Dixon III of Macon; Jennifer Ellis and Mark Malueg of Watkinsville; Christopher Ferrell of Valdosta; Jamaal Graham of Atlanta; Hammett Jerimy of Temple; Erica Lent of Smyrna; Johnny McDonald, Jr. of Augusta; Ernest Mitchell of Albany; Michael Rudell of Lilburn; Stefanie Sanford of Waleska; Jesse Shepard III of Newnan; Jonathan Williams of Fayetteville; and Joseph Parkin of Tannersville, Pennsylvania.

     The graduation and reception will take place at 10:00 a.m. at the Georgia Public Safety Training Center in Forsyth. Michael Medaris, Senior Policy Advisor for the National Police Corps Program, will be the keynote speaker. The graduation is the culmination of a rigorous 20-week Police Corps training program, which teaches the knowledge, skills and attitudes police officers need to serve on community patrol. At the conclusion of the training, all participants must satisfy high performance standards for physical, mental and emotional fitness. The police departments in which individual participants will serve provide additional training as appropriate.

     Students interested in the Police Corps apply to the lead agency of the participating state in which they wish to serve. For information about the Georgia Police Corps program and the next training class, contact Shannon Cook at 478-993-4231.

     The Office of Justice Programs provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP is headed by an Assistant Attorney General and comprises 5 component bureaus and 2 offices: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; and the Office for Victims of Crime, as well as the Executive Office for Weed and Seed, and the Office of the Police Corps and Law Enforcement Education. Information about OJP programs, publications, and conferences is available on the OJP Web site, www.ojp.usdoj.gov.