Twenty new constables were welcomed into the Cumbria Constabulary as part of the new degree-holder entry programme (DHEP), at an attestation event yesterday.
The new programme provides a two-year accelerated route for those entering with a degree in any subject, enabling recruits employed by Cumbria Constabulary to train as a police constable and gain a Graduate Diploma in Professional Policing Practice via University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).
Deputy Chief Constable Mark Webster, Cumbria Constabulary said: “I’m delighted to welcome these officers to Cumbria at the start of their policing careers.
“They begin a role which offers diversity, challenge and great fulfilment; where together, they can make a real difference to our communities.
“They are also our first recruits on the degree-holder entry programme which means those joining have all the experiences that go with completing a degree which can be hugely beneficial to our policing approach.”
The DHEP programme is part of a drive to open up policing to people who may not have considered it to be a career choice for them in the past.
Chief Inspector Matt Pearman, Cumbria Constabulary Learning and Development, said: “The officers will initially receive classroom training which lasts 22 weeks where they were learn the core roles of being police constable and the legislation behind that.
“While the recruits on this new programme will be afforded protected learning time, the majority of the two-year learning period will see them out in communities protecting the public.
“After successfully completing the two-year period, the new officers will not only pass their probation but they will also receive a professional qualification.”
Professor Ian Allison, Executive Dean, Faculty of Science and Technology at UCLan, said: “It’s fantastic to have been selected by Cumbria Constabulary to deliver the Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP) as one of the entry pathways within the Police Education Qualifications Framework (PEQF). This first cohort is a very important milestone for Policing and we are delighted to play our part.
“UCLan has been shaping and delivering a wide range of Policing provision for a period of 18 years, having a positive impact and opening up a range of employment opportunities for individuals as a nationally recognised Higher Education Institution within the discipline.
“We’re looking forward to working in partnership with Cumbria Constabulary and despite the significant challenges that Covid 19 has presented, we will be fully supporting the new officers by still delivering high quality teaching combined with practical experience for the candidates embarking upon these new and exciting opportunities.”
Cumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Peter McCall, said: “It’s fantastic that we can welcome our first cohort of new recruits into the DHEP.
“I’m always delighted to see more officers joining the constabulary and this new scheme introduces a new route for those with a degree background.
“It is important that Policing reflects the community it serves and will continue to need officers with all types of education and experience, they all have their value and policing is richer for the breadth and diversity.
“Policing is an incredibly rewarding career with many opportunities and this is a brilliant opportunity for anyone considering joining the Constabulary.
“First-hand experience is key in being a well-rounded and successful police officer and I’m sure the recruits will receive plenty of it.
“I look forward to seeing the recruits develop as to professional and skilled Police Officers and I am sure they will excel in the DHEP and on the streets of Cumbria very soon.”