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Explorer program teaches law enforcement work to teens, young adults

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    Lorain County Prosecutor Dennis Will speaks to students at the Avon Lake Explorers Junior Cop program Tuesday.

    KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE

  • 020618-EXPLORER-COP-KB02

    Lorain County Domestic Relations Court Judge Sherry Glass speaks to students at the Avon Lake Explorers Junior Cop program on Tuesday evening, February 6.

    KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE

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AVON LAKE — Police officers are teaching teens and young adults what their job is like.

22875145

Lorain County Prosecutor Dennis Will speaks to students at the Avon Lake Explorers Junior Cop program Tuesday.

KRISTIN BAUER / CHRONICLE Enlarge

The police department is three months into its class of the Law Enforcement Explorer Program. Teenagers and young adults, ages 14 to 20, attend classes on a weekly basis and learn hands-on about the profession.

Sgt. Les Carrender said they had a good response to the program, with about 10 to 14 young women and men participating in the program.

“The purpose is to teach about law enforcement,” he said. “If we could educate them before they choose that field, we can direct them in their career paths and choices.”

Carrender said he taught the class in the 1990s when he worked at the Amherst Police Department.

“Kyle Gelenius from Amherst High School was one of our Explorers and now is the president of the Fraternal Order of Police and a policeman with the Lorain Police Department,” he said.

Carrender said the program teaches all aspects of law enforcement.

“It isn’t just police officers working the streets but also detective bureaus, prosecutors, judges, forensics,” he said. “Without the rest, it just doesn’t work.”

Lorain County Prosecutor Dennis Will and Lorain County Domestic Relations Court Judge Sherry Glass were invited to talk about their side of law enforcement.

Will said the program has three functions.

“It gives a better understanding of what police have to face, it encourages people to decide if they want to come into this line of work and it’s an educational process of society — what government does — I think that’s important,” he said.

Glass said there are many facets of law enforcement and that she talked with participants about all of them.

“What motivates me is to motivate them,” she said. “I want to know what their interests are.”

The Law Enforcement Explorer Program is part of the Boy Scouts of America. The cost is $30 yearly. The program starts at the beginning of the school year, and anyone can join. For more information, call Carrender at (440) 933-4567.

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