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Police Explorer Program

The Denver Police Explorers is for young men and women ages 14-20 in the Denver area who want to learn about careers in law enforcement.  Exploring is part of the program Learning For Life which is a subsidiary of the Boy Scouts of America

Explorer posts allow young men and women to "explore" a career field that they are interested in. This primarily allows the young people to make educated decisions about their futures before they invest years of education and training into a career field. 

The Denver Police Explorers program goal is not only to expose our members to what a career in law enforcement is like, but to help young people to prepare for a future career as an outstanding law enforcement officer. We take our training very seriously. Every meeting is a training meeting with instruction by Denver Police Officers and Deputy Sheriffs.

New members can join year-round, but are expected to attend the next available Recruit Academy meeting. If you prefer to wait to join the program as a recruit class is beginning, email a request to be added to our recruiting mailing list to We will send you an invitation to our next Open House. At the Open House we will present a detailed explanation and demonstration of how our program works, give applications and answer questions.

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Cost: Because we are an unfunded volunteer organization, we have to charge membership dues to cover the cost of operations. It costs $25.00 at the time you join, $40.00 at the end of the first year you are a member and then $20.00 every December after that. These membership dues are subject to change, but they have remained steady for several years.

Required items: We provide uniforms and training equipment, but we do expect explorers to purchase two items for themselves including a pair of BDU pants, and a pair of dress shoes or work boots.
  • The dress shoes or work boots must be all black, have a leather toe that can be shined and have no other colors on them. For boots- combat boots, jungle boots, SWAT boots, work boots or any similar model are fine as long as they meet the requirements above. Because explorers spend a lot of time on their feet, it is often beneficial to have boots rather than shoes.
  • BDU stands for Battle Dress Uniform, and is sometimes advertised as TDU (Tactical Dress Uniform). These are military fatigue style pants. For the explorer program they must be black (no other colors showing) and have no metal on the outside (covered zippers are okay, metal hooks are not).
  • BDU pants can be purchased at a military surplus store, a uniform supply store, a police supply store or online emergency service supply agency.
  • The pants must be BDU or TDU pants. Cargo pants, paramedic pants or other styles are not permitted.

Identification Required: All applicants are required to present proof of your identification when turning in the application.

A state issued ID card, driver’s licenses, or a government issued passport is the preferred method of proving identity. If one of those documents is not available, please provide the best identification available.

We need to see identification documents that prove the applicants full name, date of birth, and which displays a picture of the applicant. If you cannot provide all three elements on a single form of identification, please bring more than one form which combined provide all three elements- the most common combination is a school ID and a photocopy of the applicants birth certificate.\

The Recruit Academy takes place on once a year over ten Saturdays from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm. In order to graduate, explorers are expected to attend all ten sessions.

The Recruit Academy focuses on fundamental skills, knowledge and attitudes and is intended to lay the foundation for future training. 

Courses include:

  • personal discipline
  • officer safety
  • basic handcuffing
  • basic law

Explorers who are at least 16 years of age and who have successfully completed the Recruit Academy are permitted to go on ride-alongs. On a ride-along, the explorer works a shift with an on-duty police officer.

The explorer will have a chance to observe real life police work as it is occurring. Explorers who have demonstrated their abilities in both training and on prior ride-alongs may be allowed to participate in the low-risk aspects of the officer's duties during the ride along.

As law enforcement is an industry that exists to serve the community, we are proudly involved in community service. We expect each explorer to volunteer time when they can to assist with our community service events. 

Most of these events involve parking management for special events or fingerprinting children to provide parents with an Emergency Child Identification Kit. We are sometimes asked to help the Denver Police Department or Denver Sheriff’s Department with special events such as academy graduations or community fairs. 

As we are an unfunded volunteer organization, we sometimes have the need to participate in fundraising efforts such as selling candy or taking on service projects for paying corporations.

We are proud to not only be a member of the  Law Enforcement Explorer Post Advisors Association of Colorado (LEEPAAC), but to also be one of the agencies who provide the work and resources to operate LEEPAAC. 

LEEPAAC. arranges and hosts special events throughout the year, ranging for social activities to multi-agency training events.

LEEPAAC. puts on a regional conference every summer for explorers. During the conference, explorers live on a college campus for six days. At the conference, the explorers are placed into a team which competes against other teams in at least five simulated events. The top five teams in each event win a medal or trophy. The conference also presents several seminars intended to provide training in areas that might not be normally available to the explorers.

Every Wednesday night is a training meeting intended to provide Recruit Academy graduates with more advanced and task specific training. Explorers awaiting a Recruit Academy may attend Graduate Training until an Academy becomes available.

The Graduate Training program focuses on specific tasks of a law enforcement officer with a heavy focus on hands-on and practical training. In the graduate program we spend a short time in the classroom discussing the task being taught, and then set up practical exercises to reinforce what was presented in the classroom. Our most common form of practical exercise is role playing scenarios. 

In a role playing scenario, the explorers act the part of police officers responding to a simulated event. Instructors act as coaches and judges while other instructors and volunteers act as the victims, witnesses, suspects and bystanders. We make these events as realistic as we can without compromising safety.

Examples of graduate training include:
  • traffic stops
  • searching a building for an armed suspect
  • responding to a domestic dispute
  • conducting an investigation

Contact Us

Denver Police Explorers
Tech Eranda Piyasena
Public Affairs Bureau
1331 Cherokee Street
Denver, Colorado 80204

Phone: (720) 913-6639