Citizen Police Academy

The Houlton Police Department has found that education has been most effective in gaining understanding and support from the community. The Citizen Police Academy offers citizens insights into how police officers perform their duties and how the Houlton Police Department serves the community. CPA Application

Next class starts: TBD

Mission of the Academy

The purpose and mission of the Citizen Police Academy is to foster better understanding between citizens and police through education. The Academy will promote better understanding to the attendees so that they may possess greater insight into police practices and the services that we provide. Graduates of the Academy can share their knowledge and experiences with the community as the opportunity arises. Everyone benefits from enhancing citizen and community understanding of the role and function of their police department.

What is the purpose of the Citizen Police Academy?

The Citizen Academy is designed to increase understanding between the citizens of Houlton and the police by educating the community. Our intent is to acquaint citizens with law enforcement’s role in the criminal justice system, and provide increased understanding of the tasks and duties that police officers face in their daily work. By obtaining this better understanding the citizens are able to assist in finding realistic solutions to the communities or neighborhood problems.

Where did the concept originate?

The program originated in Orlando, Florida in 1984. Orlando was the first city in the United States to start a Citizen Police Academy.

What was the incentive for establishing a Citizen Police Academy in Houlton?

The Houlton Police Department’s mission statement clearly establishes the philosophy that the people plus the police is paramount for community oriented policing. The Houlton Police Department seeks to educate the citizens to create and develop a sense of cooperation between the citizens and the police to establish the common goal of providing a safe and secure community for all of our citizens.

How is the class conducted?

Citizens meet one night each week from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM for 10 weeks. They receive approximately twenty-six hours of classroom instruction by police officers and civilians who supervise or work in each particular division within the police department. The curriculum and teaching methods are similar to those of the regular Police Academy, with a mix of lecture format and scenario/hands-on training. Participants are encouraged to ask questions and express their views and concerns to members of the Houlton Police Department. Participants will be asked to critique the various instructors as well as the overall academy experience.

What should I expect from this course?

The Houlton Police Department Citizen Police Academy (HPD CPA) is a 10-week program that is intended to provide participants with an overview of the Police Department’s functions and operational procedures. The weekly sessions are not intended to train participants to be Police Officers but are intended to help create a citizenry that is both familiar and comfortable with their Police Department. The classes are taught by officers of the Houlton Police Department, which gives participants ample opportunity to interact, ask questions, and speak with the instructors as well as the Command Staff. Participants will be asked to critique the various instructors as well as the overall academy experience.

How will the information be obtained in this course be used by the public?

We believe that an informed public is one that is better able to understand decisions made by the police department. We want the participants to have enough background information to now why the police “do what they do” and we hope the class will break down many barriers between the police and the public.


Who is eligible to attend?

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age and live or work in the greater Houlton area. Ages 16 and 17 may attend if permitted by parents or guardians, or accompanied by an adult.

What are the expectations of the participants?

Due to the anticipated high number of applicants; we require a commitment to the 10-week program. In order to achieve the full benefit of the program, attendance is critical.


How do you apply?

Complete the Citizen Police Academy registration form.

Stop by the Houlton Police Department to get a copy or download and print a copy and return it to the department. Click here for copy of CPA Registration Form. CPA Application

Registration Forms should be submitted back to the PD by TBD

If you have any questions or need more information please contact Citizen Police Academy Coordinators at 532-2287.