(WSYM — The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is accepting candidates from all backgrounds to apply for its 10th conservation officer academy, scheduled to begin later this spring. All applicants who successfully complete the academy will graduate in fall 2021.
A “hybrid” academy is being offered to anyone who is currently certified or certifiable by the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and meets the DNR’s hiring requirements.
“This hybrid academy will allow eligible recruits to complete a shortened training academy focusing on conservation officer-specific laws and functions,” said F/Lt. Jason Wicklund, DNR Law Enforcement Division, in a press release.
All other applicants will be eligible for the traditional DNR conservation officer academy, which will fulfill the MCOLES basic training requirements for holding a law enforcement license and training specific to becoming a conservation officer.
The 2021 conservation officer academy will be based at the DNR’s Ralph A. MacMullan Center. Additional training may take place at Camp Grayling and at the Michigan State Police Training Academy. Virtual training also will be used, when appropriate, to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
“Our main priority is keeping recruits healthy so they can focus on the academy and training,” Wicklund said.
Previous law enforcement, fishing and hunting experience is not required to become a conservation officer, nor is a college education.
“Our instructors are the best at what they do,” Wicklund said. “We want to see applicants succeed and will provide recruits everything they need to be successful.”
During the academy, recruits will become State of Michigan employees and receive biweekly paychecks while collecting benefits and retirement.
To learn more, click here.