STC provides police training close to home
Officers from the South Texas College Police Department held Basic Firearms Instructor training for members of various police departments across the Rio Grande Valley at the Regional Center for Public Safety Excellence recently.
Rarely offered in the area, this course not only includes an overview on how to shoot different kinds of firearms, but also helps the officers develop skills and techniques needed to organize and teach a firearms course.
“We're teaching the students how to become an instructor to hold their required trainings and to run different drills that meet their department needs. They practice on different settings and targets that ultimately are going to improve their shooting,” said STC officer Micheal Medrano.
Police officers from Roma, San Juan, Raymondville, Weslaco, McAllen and Edinburg attended the course at STC’s RCPSE, they completed 40 hours of training and passed various tests to get certified.
“We put up courses like this, especially at the Regional Center, not just for our department, people from everywhere come because it is so rare. We’ve seen people from San Antonio, Del Rio, El Paso, Dallas, even officers from different states come to our courses because they can get credit for them at their state.”
“It’s great that South Texas College is an option cause for these types of trainings sometimes you have to look out of state, STC gives us a chance to come out here to qualify and learn from its instructors,” said Eric Garza from Edinburg Police Department.
STC officer and instructor, Guadalupe Gonzalez, said that for a firearms instructor is crucial to know the department needs in regards of what qualifies an officer to keep their license as well as state mandates, this way they can successfully elaborate lesson plans that will meet those needs. He added that during this course each officer used their own gun, as they vary from agency to agency.
“Most of these students are in a training division in their respective departments. The state requires that we do certain trainings throughout the year to keep our license and firearms training is one of them.”
Because this course is meant to shape instructors that will lead their own departments in the future, this specific training is rarely offered by other academies in the Valley.
“We put up courses like this, especially at the Regional Center, not just for our department, people from everywhere come because it is so rare,” said Medrano. “We’ve seen people from San Antonio, Del Rio, El Paso, Dallas, even officers from different states come to our courses because they can get credit for them at their state.”
In addition to numerous police and fire department trainings, the Regional Center also offers the rental of state-of-the-art shooting and driving simulators, which provide realistic scenarios that can help officers practice their decision making under stressful and dangerous situations.
Next training to be held at the RCPSE will be the Patrol Rifle Instructor Course on February 6-10, 2023. For more information on training and programs offered at STC’s RCPSE, visit southtexascollege.edu/rcpse/ or call 956-872-4208.