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Tennessee Highway Patrol graduates 36 state troopers

On May 20, Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Commissioner Jeff Long and Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) Colonel Matt Perry welcomed the newest graduating classes of Tennessee State Troopers. The department simultaneously instructed a regular 16-week trooper cadet class and a 10-week lateral trooper cadet class. The lateral class returned from their district assignments for the graduation ceremony that took place at the Hermitage Hills Baptist Church in Nashville. To view highlights of the graduation, Click Here<https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sq3P115sqF4>.

Lateral Trooper Cadet Class 422 graduated 14 trooper cadets composed of all prior Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) certified law enforcement officers. Class 422 completed 10-weeks of specialized training to build upon their training and experience received as prior law enforcement officers.

Graduating Trooper Cadet Class 522 graduated 22 cadets. This was a traditional full 16-week trooper cadet class. This included four cadets with prior military service, one cadet with an Associate degree and five cadets with Bachelor’s degrees.

One graduate, trooper Daniel Houston, will be assigned to Coffee County.

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The new graduating troopers completed intense physical and classroom training which earned them their badges. After graduation, the new troopers will continue training with troopers who are classified as Field Training Officers. This additional training will consist of more than 400 hours of hands-on experience in the field.

Governor Lee served as the keynote speaker during the graduation ceremony, and Commissioner Jeff Long swore in the new troopers as they delivered their oaths of office.

“The Tennessee Highway Patrol plays a crucial role in protecting Tennesseans, and I commend the newest trooper class for answering this important call to service,” said Gov. Bill Lee. “This year, we made strategic investments to put 100 additional troopers on Tennessee roads, strengthen training and prioritize proven crime prevention, and we’ll continue to give law enforcement the support they need to keep every Tennessee community safe.”

“Today, we recognize the hard work and perseverance you have shown during several months of difficult physical and academic training,” said Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Jeff Long. “You are now part of a thin blue line that brings order during chaos. At times you will selflessly put your life on the line for people you have never met. In return, you will make Tennessee a safer place to live and work in. I’m proud to congratulate you as you join one of the most respected law enforcement agencies in the United States.”

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“When you leave here today, and every day as you don your uniform, remember that service is at the heart of being a Tennessee State Trooper. Perform your duty with honor and treat this badge and uniform with respect. This job will test you. It will test your patience, your compassion, your mental and physical strength. It will challenge you with adversity, stress, and long days and nights. But it is work worth doing. You no longer serve only yourself; you serve the citizens of the state of Tennessee and those that travel through our state.”

From their own resources, Cadet Class 522 conducted a class project. This resulted in the cadets donating 22 backpacks filled with school supplies for students at Hickman Elementary School in Nashville, Tennessee.

Bethel University presented a $5,000 scholarship to Trooper Cody Roberts. Trooper Roberts is assigned to Maury County, of the THP Lawrenceburg District.

Trooper Albert South of class 522 was named the top cadet for his class and was presented with the Trooper Calvin Jenks Memorial Award for Excellence for achieving the overall highest average. The award was named in honor of the late Trooper Calvin Jenks, who was killed in the line of duty in January 2007.

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