The Kentucky State Police agency is holding town hall meetings across the state in an effort to boost recruitment numbers that have declined in recent years.
The meetings will highlight some new requirements aimed at attracting a larger pool of applicants. Aspiring troopers were once required to have 60 hours of college credit and two years of active duty service as a soldier or police officer.
"There's a lot of young men who come out of school and go to work on the family farm or straight into the workforce," said Trooper BJ Eaton. "Out east or west, we have a lot of young men who follow in family footsteps and go to work in the coal mines, so they wouldn't have those minimum requirements that we've always required."
New requirements include a high school diploma or GED and three years of consistent employment in any field. Military or police experience are now considered bonuses.
Eaton says the KSP has not lowered its standards. Recruits will still undergo the rigorous 24-week training academy in Frankfort, take the same tests, and undergo the same background checks as always.
The next recruitment meeting is Thursday in Bowling Green at Warren East High School. A meeting in Barbourville will take place on June 12 at Barbourville Forcht Bank, and again on June 19 in Prestonsburg at the Mountain Arts Center. All of the meetings start at 6:00 p.m. local time.