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Springfield's 77th Police Academy 'is the most diverse' in the history of the department, according to SPD

77th Springfield Police Academy
Springfield Police Department
77th Springfield Police Academy

The Springfield Police Department says its 77th Springfield Police Academy is the most diverse in the history of the department in terms of gender, race and ethnicity.

The 21 recruits are from all over the country, including New York, Utah, North Carolina, Colorado and the Midwest. They have a variety of work and education experience including military, corrections, medical and previous law enforcement.

The recruits will spend six months completing 1100 hours of “intense law enforcement training,” according to SPD in a statement.

The Springfield Police Department has been dealing with a shortage of officers and other employees in recent years. SPD spokesperson Cris Swaters said, as of Monday, there were 43 sworn vacancies, and, as of May 30, there were 19.5 non-sworn vacancies.

Recruitment is underway for the 78th Academy, which is set to begin January 2024. You can apply online at

Michele Skalicky has worked at KSMU since the station occupied the old white house at National and Grand. She enjoys working on both the announcing side and in news and has been the recipient of statewide and national awards for news reporting. She likes to tell stories that make a difference. Michele enjoys outdoor activities, including hiking, camping and leisurely kayaking.