Galveston College celebrated the graduation of its first full-time Law Enforcement Academy cadets Dec. 14 with a crowd of more than 250 family members, friends and law enforcement professionals from throughout the region.
In a processional led by a traditional police bagpiper, the 17 graduates of Class 1 filed into the Abe and Annie Seibel Wing at Galveston College to receive their certifications and to be administered the law enforcement oath of office.
Mary Pyle, director of the Law Enforcement Academy, served as master of ceremonies and introduced Galveston College President, Dr. Myles Shelton, who gave welcoming remarks to family and friends of the graduates. Dr. Shelton commended the work of the program instructors and the cadets and congratulated the graduates as they launched their careers.
Graduating cadet Matthew Cauley, who was the class valedictorian, spoke on behalf of the class and gave thanks to family members, instructors and Galveston College for the opportunity of attending the academy.
Guest speaker Chief LeeRoy Amador of the Galveston Independent School District Police Department encouraged the graduates to serve by the Golden Rule and to treat those whom they are called to assist the way they want their loved ones to be treated.
A presentation of special awards included the Top Gun award for the best marksmanship on the firing range by cadet Clayton Cole. The top academic achievement award went to cadet Matthew Cauley.
The graduates, all of whom serve with local law enforcement agencies, had a 100 percent pass rate on the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement licensure exam and an overall class average of 95 on 16 examinations throughout the program.
Graduates included Tristen Allen, Kenneth Callister, Matthew Cauley, Clayton Cole, Zoie Delacerda, Jonathan Douglas, Enrique Garcia, Jr., Justin Gibbs, Trevor Hennington, Ethan Kahla, Jacob Lira, Martin Martinez, Larry Murph, Alberto Rodriguez, Tyler TenEyck, Jesus Juarez-Vasquez and Victoria Westbrook-Cauley.
Cadet Class I instructors included. Barton Stephenson, Galveston College; Lt. Paul Adkins, Texas Department of Public Safety; Sgt. John Aucoin, Jamaica Beach Police Department; Weston Dancewicz, Texas Department of Public Safety; Geoffrey Gainer, Galveston Police Department; Det. Derek Gaspard, Galveston Police Department; Sgt. Susan Gibbs, University of Texas Medical Branch Police Department; Brent Haynes, Galveston County District Attorney’s Office; Sgt. Billy Kilburn, Galveston County Sheriff’s Office; Jacob Manuel, Galveston County Sheriff’s Office; and Cris Martinez, Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission.
Also, Sean Migues, Galveston Police Department; Wayne Moody, Galveston Police Department; Sgt. Khristin New, JCMO; Sgt. Raymond Orozco, Texas A&M University; Kevin Petroff, Galveston County District Attorney’s Office; Ronny Phillips, Alvin Community College; William Reed, Galveston County District Attorney’s Office; Galveston County District Attorney Jack Roady; David Roark, Galveston Police Department; John Siverand, UTMB Police Department; Det. Michelle Sollenberger, Galveston Police Department; J.L. Sullivan, Galveston Police Department; Sgt. Rene Vela, Galveston Police Department; Juana (Jo) Villareal, Galveston Police Department; and Clint Weekly, Texas Department of Public Safety.
More than 400 cadets have graduated from Galveston College’s part-time Law Enforcement Academy since it began in 1987. Many of those graduates have gone on to join law enforcement agencies in Galveston County, throughout Texas and the Gulf Coast region.
The law enforcement academy is designed for those who are seeking their Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE) basic peace officers certification. The 699-hour course of study includes, but is not limited to
- review of the Texas Penal Code and Code of Criminal Procedure,
- Texas traffic laws,
- firearms training
- physical training/defensive tactics,
- police vehicle operation,
- vice and narcotics investigation,
- criminal investigation and
- traffic accident investigation.
For more information on the Galveston College Law Enforcement Academy, contact Mary Pyle, Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Academy program director, at (409) 944-1331 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For photo highlights of the ceremony, click here.