By Marli Naidoo
Law enforcement can be one of the most fulfilling career choices. Many police officers feel that they are realising a personal calling and are making a difference in their communities through their work.
Police officers maintain law and order, prevent crime, investigate offences and conserve the country’s internal security. They have to be loyal towards the police service and put the country and the safety of the public above their own personal safety.
However, not everybody is cut out for a career in this field. Candidates must be emotionally mature and stable, be able to function under pressure, be responsible and honest, and have integrity. A calm and patient disposition is essential. They must be able to give and execute orders, make fast decisions, be disciplined and be mentally and physically fit, and be able to work irregular hours.
Apart from these personal characteristics candidates must have certain skills before they can qualify as police officers. It is essential that the person must be a South African citizen between the ages of 18 and 35 and have a driver’s licence. He must be fluent in English and at least one other official language and must not have a criminal record.
You need not have a diploma or degree to become a police officer, but you must have matric with the compulsory languages and Mathematics or Mathematical Literacy. If you are accepted for training, the first six months of training usually takes place at of the SAPS training colleges all over the country. If you want to assure more opportunities for promotion and variation in options, it would be beneficial to complete a diploma or degree course in policing. You can always continue your studies later in your career.
Anybody who is really passionate about the career will, in spite of the obstacles, feel deeply fulfilled knowing that he can make a difference in people’s lives every day and can prevent a lot of pain and grief in his day’s work.
Careers Portal: https://www.careersportal.co.za/careers/careers-advice/where-to-study-to-become-a-saps-officer
Go study: https://www.gostudy.net/occupation/police-officer
City of Tshwane: https://www.tshwane.gov.za/sites/Departments/Metro-Police/Pages/Police-Academy.aspx