Saturday, December 13, 2008

News from the front lines

So, I'm still unemployed. Nothing new there yet.

I went down and took a test recently that may change that though. I've kicked around the idea of being a police dispatcher a couple of times and had even gone into the Sheriff's dispatch center for the good portion of a shift and shadowed a couple of the dispatchers. (Some departments allow you to shadow an officer for a shift. It's known as a "ride along." Does that make what I did in dispatch a "sit in"?)

I went down on Thursday and took the California Dispatcher 1 POST (Police Officer Standards and Training) test. I feel like I did pretty good, even in the section that I felt weakest on.

A couple words of advice if you ever find yourself about to take this test: Before going in to the test, make sure that you're well fed and caffineted. The test is three hours long. No matter if you take tests fast or if you use every last minute, you're there for three hours. Also, if you have even the slightest hint of a headache before you start, make sure that you take something for it. I'd advise taking something for a headache even if you don't have one, because by the time it's over, you will.

Test results will be back and letters sent out the second week of January. If I scored 50 or higher on the test, I will move on to the oral board portion of the hiring process. I'm not worried about oral boards as I've done them twice already; once for the Search and Rescue team, the other when I had applied for Animal Control with the county. Both times I scored very high among the group of interviewees. Everyone who passes oral boards goes through background checks (again, no problem) and put on an eligibility list and remain eligible for a year. The top two get hired. Hopefully, I'm one of those two.