57 recruits tested in 23 week MSP trooper program - WNEM TV 5

57 recruits tested in 23 week MSP trooper program

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

Michigan State Police is testing the skills of 57 news recruits at the MSP Training Academy in Lansing.

“It's intense, there's no sugar coating about it,” said Shawntina Austin.

TV5 got an inside look at the intense training to become a trooper with three recruits from Saginaw, Austin, Zachary Bothe and Justin Clarke.

“It's definitely tough, the instructors they don't just hand it to us, we definitely have to earn it,” Bothe said. “It's challenging but it's nothing we can't accomplish.”

The recruits are on week three of a nearly six month program.

Recruits practice with firearms for four hours a day during their 23 week program.

“Every day it's 100 percent. It's full fledge, there's no day off. And that's the same mindset we have to carry when we're out there working,” Clarke said. “Working with people, working with the unknown.”

They’ll also simulate an underwater rescue in the water tank and practice tactics like punching, kicking and tackling.

Some of the recruits said they want to serve in the area they grew up in.

“There's a different vibe when you work with people from where you're from, that you grew up with and know the area. You can relate to your upbringing,” Austin said.

The intense training is physically grueling and intense.

“Very tired. Once 10 o’clock comes, no doubt about it, you need a bed, don't want to talk about anything and sleep,” Clarke said.

But the recruits said it's worth it.

“I try to take it one day at a time, try [not] to get too far ahead of myself,” Bothe said. “Being able to serve the community and the state that I'm from, get out there and help is what I look forward to most.”

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