A San Angelo Police Department Lieutenant, along with two hundred twenty-one other law enforcement officers, recently graduated from the FBI National Academy Program at Quantico, Virginia. The 256th Session of the National Academy consisted of men and women from 47 states. The class included members of law enforcement agencies from the District of Columbia, 23 international countries, five military organizations, and two federal civilian organizations.
Lieutenant Mike Hernandez, who oversees the San Angelo Police Department Community Services Division, was among the selected few chosen to attend his year's session.
Internationally known for its academic excellence, the National Academy Program, held at the FBI Academy, offers 10 weeks of advanced investigative, management, and fitness training for selected officers having proven records as professionals within their agencies. On average, these officers have 19 years of law enforcement experience and usually return to their agencies to serve in executive-level positions.
FBI Director James Comey was the principal speaker at the ceremony held on March 28, 2014. The graduating officers were represented by their class spokesperson, D.F. Pace, a Lieutenant with the Philadelphia Police Department in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Training for the program is provided by the FBI Academy instructional staff, Special Agents, and other staff members holding advanced degrees, many of whom are recognized internationally in their fields of expertise.
Since 1972, National Academy students have been able to earn undergraduate and graduate credits from the University of Virginia due to the accreditation by the university of the many courses offered. Lt. Hernandez received 17 college credit hours relating to the following courses: Leadership for Law Enforcement, Spiritual Leadership in Law Enforcement, Public Speaking, and Contemporary Issues in Police Media Relations.
A total of 47,254 graduates now represent the FBI National Academy since it began in July 1935. Of this number, 29,741 are still active in law enforcement work. Less than 1% of all law enforcement in the world is invited to attend this academy.