Amid Statewide Police Shortage, Illinois State Police Pushes for Lateral Recruits

New hires will receive paid training and benefits that include increased hourly wages, plus a $1,000 hiring bonus! Commercial Driver’s Licenses not required to apply.

Current State Police practice requires cadet police officers to undergo lengthy boot camp training, and to accept assignment to a location within Illinois chosen by headquarters. The standard Illinois State Police academy training period is 26 weeks, a lengthy time period that is required because of the demanding and hazardous nature of public service first-responder police work. The State Police’s police training academy is located in Springfield.

The Illinois State Police recognizes that police officers from other jurisdictions already possess vital elements of first-responder work experience. The new ISP Lateral Entry Training Program creates an alternative entry platform into the State Police for recruits with specified levels of prior experience. Program recruits will be assigned to an alternative 14-week police academy program. Within this alternative program, five weeks will be attended in person and the other 9 weeks can be attended while on district duty. In addition, qualified Lateral Entry troopers will be granted the right to select the district in which they wish to work. The entrants will report to their chosen districts after initial training, and will attend most of their final nine weeks of Lateral Entry retraining at the district level.

Lateral Entry Training applicants are required to already be certified police officers, have graduated from an accredited law enforcement academy, have at least two years of full-time police experience, and possess a specified level of DWI/DUI field sobriety testing certification. The State Police states that they are seeking to recruit at least 300 new troopers during the remaining months of calendar year 2022.