Peace Officer Basic Academy
Successful completion of the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission's (OPOTC) certified Peace Officer Basic Academy (POBA) program is a requirement for employment as a law enforcement professional in Ohio. The academy's nearly 700 hours of mandated training is available in two formats at Washington State. The annual evening academy runs Monday thru Friday evenings and some weekends, taking 7 months to complete. The annual day academy runs Monday thru Friday, no weekends, taking 4 months to complete.
Most equipment and uniform needs are provided by Washington State. Each cadet must provide a rain jacket, running pants and eye/ ear protection. Attendance and participation throughout the Academy is demanding and mandatory.
OPOTC’s Peace Officer Basic Academy (POBA) training is recognized by West Virginia for certification purposes subject to provisions set forth by the WV Division of Justice and Community Services. Similar reciprocity may or may not exist with other states.
This program offers three options:
The Academy is 24 semester hours. Successful completion results in a State of Ohio certification as a peace officer eligible to be employed by nearly all jurisdictions in Ohio. This option does not qualify for federal financial aid except for the GI Bill.
You will be required to complete 30 semester hours and is comprised on 24 semester hours for the POBA certificate as well as English and Physical Fitness classes. Successful completion results in a college level certificate that may be applied toward completion of an associate or bachelor degree and the State of Ohio certification as a peace officer eligible to be employed by nearly all jurisdictions in Ohio. This option does qualify for federal financial aid and the GI Bill.
You will be required to complete the 24 semester hours necessary for the Academy, plus an additional 42 semester hours which includes Criminal Justice related topics, English, Communications, Psychology, and other associate-degree specific courses. Successful completion results in an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice and the State of Ohio certification as a peace officer eligible to be employed by nearly all jurisdictions in Ohio. You may opt to transfer your credits toward completion of a bachelor degree. This option does qualify for federal financial aid and the GI Bill.
How to apply:
- Background check. Applicants are required to submit to and pass a criminal background check via the National Webcheck system within 90 days of the start of the academy. Disqualification based on criminal convictions is determined by OPOTC.
- Drug Screening. All prospective students must submit to a 5 panel drug screen at the testing facility established by Washington State Community College within 90 days of the start date of the school.
- Physical Examination. All prospective students must submit to a physical examination within six (6) months of the first day of OPOTC topics by a medical doctor (MD), osteopath (DO), physician's assistant (PA), or certified nurse practitioner (CNP), licensed by the Ohio State Medical Board or the Ohio State Board of Nursing.
- Physical conditioning. In order to be accepted into the academy, all prospective cadets are REQUIRED to pass a pre-academy physical fitness test. This test is identical to what you are tested on at the end of the academy (push ups, sit ups, 1.5 mile run) except the pretest is at 15% of the Cooper Standard. The final test is at 50% of the Cooper Standard.
- High school diploma or GED
- Must be 18 years of age or older (a minimum age of 19 or 20 is recommended by WSCC)
- Complete Washington State application process
- Complete OPOTC's application process
- Hold a valid driver's license
- Attend the mandatory orientation/ information session
All potential cadets must complete the following attached forms.
- POBT Student Handbook - (return completed Student Handbook Acknowledge & Verification, Request for National WebCheck, FERPA Consent to Release Student Information, Student Health Data Form, Student Enrollment/Certification Record)
- Oath of Conduct
- SF147 - Authorization for Use or Disclosure of Drug Screen Information (Return completed form within 90 days of 1st day of academy)
- SF195 - Basic Training Physical Fitness Assessment Form (Return completed form within 120 days of 1st day of academy)