LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. -- Calling on anyone who thinks they have what it takes to become a police officer: applications for police testing are now being accepted by the Lancaster County Chiefs of Police Association.
That’s an organization comprised of 27 police departments across Lancaster County.
People are able to apply with or without a law enforcement background. The challenge has become finding people who want to become an officer. Some officers say people don't realize the job is more than arrests and traffic stops.
Some people may think being a police officer is like a game of ‘cops and robbers’. Current law enforcement in Lancaster County say the job involves much more than that.
“The top five things you're probably doing in this job is talking to people, counseling people, paperwork, writing a good report, and just being approachable," said Sergeant Michael Piacentino, Manheim Township Police Department.
"Part of this job is important to be able to multitask, be able to talk with people, be able to inform an opinion and stick to your opinion, if you have one," said Detective Sarah Goss, Manheim Township Police Department.
Detective Goss handles a majority of child and sex abuse cases for Manheim Township Police Department.
She's one of just a few women working for the department.
Manheim Township Police are looking to fix that, hoping to hire more women and increase diversity.
“We need to make sure we have women, and people of color, and people with different religious backgrounds, and whatever that may be, so we are properly representing those that we are serving," said Sergeant Piacentino.
According to a director with the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association (PCPA), there are a number of benefits to joining a department.
"You know, the concerns of the stress and hours... these are good jobs. They generally pay well. They have good pension, have good health care benefits, and vacation, and so forth. I would encourage people to apply," said Tom Gross, Executive Director PCPA.
Sergeant Piacentino and Detective Goss echo his message, encouraging people with little to no background in law enforcement to apply.
“You bring a lot to the job in terms of life experience so if your degree is outside of Criminal Justice, and this is something that you're interested in, go for it," said Detective Goss.
That life experience and drive, and a good test score, could just be enough to land you a role on the right side of the law.
"The test is not law enforcement based. You don’t have to have any prior knowledge background in law enforcement. It’s just simple reading comprehension and a math exam," explained Piacentino.
People interested in applying with the Lancaster County Chiefs of Police Association, just type www.Policeapp.com into your web browser, or click this link. Scroll down until you see Lancaster County, click it, and then you can register.
It's a one time fee of $75 to take both the physical and written exam.
Other municipalities do not have a joint application.