JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri- Captain Roger D. Whittler, director of the Career Recruitment Division, would like to inform the public of the following:

The Missouri State Highway Patrol will host the 2nd Youth Academy Program beginning on Monday, July 9, 2018, and concluding with a graduation ceremony at 6 p.m. on Friday, July 13, 2018. The graduation ceremony will take place at Maryland Heights Community Center, 2300 McKelvey Road, Maryland Heights. This five-day residential course is designed for St. Louis area high school aged youth interested in seeking a career in law enforcement. Thirty area youth ages 16-18 have been selected to attend.

The Youth Academy Program is a unique hands-on experience for youth that illustrates the role of law enforcement within our community. Presentations provide the cadets with a broad knowledge of first aid, criminal investigation, and careers within the criminal justice field (Patrol road officer, crash investigator, SWAT member, and marine operation trooper). This program also creates an environment that instills teamwork and discipline, while encouraging character development. Cadets will be involved in various team-building activities and participate in a zip line and high ropes challenge course.

Additionally, the Youth Academy Program staff works to foster and create positive relationships between youth and law enforcement. The program staff consists of members and civilian employees of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. Throughout the five days, the Youth Academy Program staff joins participants in physical fitness, practical exercises, and team building activities, and shares meals during the week.

The 2018 Missouri State Highway Patrol Youth Academy Program is funded in its entirety through donations from individuals and businesses, the agency said.