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The Danville Police Department’s six newest officers graduated from the GREAT Program Friday, Sept. 1, during a ceremony held in the Averett University President’s Suite at Frank R. Campbell Stadium at the E. Stuart James Grant North Campus.
Grass Roots Empowerment and Action Training (GREAT) is four weeks of classroom, workshop, and real-world training that enables officers to understand the history and inherent needs of the Danville community for new officers. This program is in partnership with Averett University’s Center for Community Engagement and Career Competitiveness. Five classes of new officers have now completed the GREAT program, which was previously known as CLIP (Community Leadership and Immersion Program).
During the ceremony, Officers Amber M. Brown, Jonathan B. Coleman, Deandre J. Edmonds, Kamden N. Lewis, Thomas L. Maginnis and Kayla M. Robinson presented their class project before members of the community, the police department, and Averett.
On Thursday, Aug. 24, the GREAT graduates held a cookout with games and activities for Woodside Village Apartments residents. Each officer discussed a different piece of the planning that went into holding the event, and its purpose – to bring together the Woodside Village community for interaction with one another and members of the department.
Each graduate was presented with a plaque commemorating their completion of the program.
GREAT is mandatory training for all new officers. The curriculum is built by community members and hosts a diverse group of speakers from various backgrounds, demographics, organizations, with an emphasis on cultural awareness. The final week of training consists of presenting a completed project that will have a lasting effect on the community. Community stakeholders in consultation with Chief Scott Booth developed this program to ensure new officers have the resources and information to be successful once they are assigned to a quarter (Northwest, Northeast, Southwest, Southeast) in the city. This promotes the idea for officers and the department to be problem solvers within the community. GREAT training occurs after an officer completes approximately 26 weeks of recruitment training at the regional academy.
Watch the full ceremony below.