Receive a $500 grant for your summer and/or fall education. CCA has $1.75 million in federal tuition and emergency grants available for summer and fall. Everyone, regardless of immigration status, is eligible to apply for these grants. Learn more about financial assistance.


Police Academy FAQs

1)  What are the Academy Start Times?
2)  What are the Academy's Requirements and Restrictions?
3)  What type of College Credit and Financial Aid are offered?
4)  What type of Arrest Control training do you do?
5)  Do I have to be in great shape?
6)  What type of tactical training is offered and what distinguishes it from other academies?
7)  What is your firearms program like?
8)  Who do I contact?

 1) When does the Academy start?

Thanks for inquiring about becoming a cadet at the Community College of Aurora, CO Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy and starting on your path to a career in the best profession in America!


We offer two approximately 42+-week long, 800+ hour, part-time academies for the 2021 calendar years.

The next academy, in SPRING 2021,will be a part-time academy, running Monday through Thursday nights from 6 to 10 PM AND all day on Saturdays from 8 AM to 5 PM. It will start on January 19th, 2021; and has a projected graduation on October 28th, 2021. A mandatory orientation for the SPRING 2021 academy will be held for all accepted applicants on Tuesday, January 12th, 2021, from 5:30 to 8:30 PM; applications are being accepted up to Jan. 8th, 2021. Entry for qualified candidates, who have been through the final vetting process with the Academy Director, or the Director’s appointee for vetting, is on a first-come, first-approved basis. We do make a wait-list over and above the first 23 applicants.

  • The academy’s graduation date is tentative; based on IF the COVID-19 restrictions have been lifted. If the COVID-19 restrictions are still in place when the academy starts, per college rules, the majority of classroom-based instruction will be by Webex and will still be taught Monday through Thursday nights from 6 PM to 10 PM. All Saturday-based “Skills” instruction (Firearms; Driving; Arrest Control Techniques) will be Face-to-Face; but will require extra time added to the academy schedule to accommodate the outside class restrictions (no more than 10 in an area at one time; necessitating the class to be split into teams that will complete their skills before another team does).

We will not be running any full-time academies through 2021.

  • The academy program fee includes the use of our Glock 17 9mm firearms; all required ammo – even if “extra” work is needed on the range to help you qualify; books; equipment; and other required materials for the program. Cadets are financially responsible for 1-2 pairs (their option) of black, police-style boots or shoes (talk with the Director before buying boots, to make sure you buy affordable, yet durable boots), a black belt for their BDU pants, a police-style flashlight, and any note-taking supplies and materials.

The current academy cost with the applicable Colorado Opportunity Fund (COF) state stipend assistance applied for qualified in-state applicants, as of 22 May 2018, is about $8,600.00. This amount, reflecting both the academy college tuition and college fees and the academy’s equipment fees for a “qualified in-state tuition” student, does not reflect future tuition or fees increases that the college may add after this date.

Applications are taken up to 4 weeks prior to the start of an academy.


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 2) Are there any disqualifying conditions that will keep me from being accepted to the academy?
We strive to admit only those possessing the highest quality of character who are prepared physically, mentally and morally for this profession. No waivers will be given for disqualifying conditions. If you have specific questions about the state P.O.S.T. list of disqualifying misdemeanor conditions, please call P.O.S.T.; DO NOT call the academy.


  1. CANNOT have a state or federal felony conviction, or General Court-Martial conviction. Cannot have a conviction, or have been convicted of, or have plead guilty to and received a deferred judgment/sentence to certain Colorado P.O.S.T.-specified misdemeanors (regardless of the state or nation in which they occurred), including those convictions or deferred sentences involving theft, moral turpitude, domestic violence and other crimes against persons.
    For a list of the P.O.S.T. misdemeanors and restrictions – see CRS 24-31-305 (1.5 & 1.6)
    Go to:
  2. CANNOT have been convicted, to include a deferred judgment/sentence, for any crime requiring a trial or appearance before a judge in the past five years (excluding minor traffic ticket appearances EXCEPT for the offenses of DUI, DWAI and Reckless Driving, even if later deferred, in the past five years).
  3. CANNOT be currently under any form of a restraining order.
  4. CANNOT have a received a Dishonorable Discharge from the Armed Forces (those who received an Administrative or “General-Under Honorable Conditions” discharge MUST confer with the Academy Director before applying to the academy).
  5. CANNOT have four or more moving violations in the past two years, or a total of seven or more moving violations in the past five years, AND not have more than six points on your driving record at the time of entrance to the academy.
  6. CANNOT have had your license suspended for any reason within the past three years.
  7. CANNOT have used marijuana, in any form, within the past eighteen months AND CANNOT have used any other illegal drugs in the past 5 years.
  8. CANNOT have EVER sold, manufactured, or transported for hire, ANY illegal drugs.
  9. CANNOT have been officially disciplined, suspended or expelled in secondary or post-secondary schools for violent physical acts against others or for acts of violence or moral turpitude that resulted in suspension, expulsion and/or referral to the Juvenile Court system for adjudication.
  10. CANNOT have received an Article 15, Captain’s Mast or other Non-Judicial military punishment for acts, while in a Service Branch, involving moral turpitude, sexual offenses, theft, honesty, or violence against others.
    > MAY BE DENIED for other Art. 15, Captain’s Mast or other Non-Judicial military punishments in the past 3 years – in such cases, an interview with the Academy Director is required before an application is accepted.
  11. MUST have passed ENG 121, or an equivalent English composition course at another college, with a “C” or better; or pass the college academic assessment test with a score high enough on the written and reading portions to qualify for ENG 121.
  12. MUST be in good physical AND emotional condition; AND pass a medical exam, that you obtain on your own from a physician no more than six months prior to the academy start date, that states you are in good enough physical condition to medically handle the physical stress of an academy and its fitness programs.
  13. MUST be at least 21 years of age to apply to the academy (exceptions are evidence of military service; 2+ years of college [“B” GPA]; f/t church/volunteer service; other substantive service indicating maturity and diverse “work/life” environment; must be 21 by graduation).
  14. MUST possess a valid (no court-ordered restrictions) CO Driver’s License (P.O.S.T. requirement) by the Academy orientation.
  15. MUST successfully pass all national and state background checks and required drug screens. Academy applicants and cadets will be drug-screened as part of the application process and while in the academy: once for full-time applicants, and twice during the part-time academy (due to its longer 2-semester duration).
  16. MUST be able to, in compliance with federal rules, reside and lawfully gain peace officer employment or obtain post-secondary peace officer academy schooling in the U.S. All applicable visas must be obtained before application; the college can provide educational visa assistance for international students (the academy cannot provide this service).
  17. PREFERRED: Completed COM 115 ~ Public Speaking with a “C” or better.

PREFERRED: 3 years, post-high school, of demonstrated substantive post-secondary college coursework, preferably completing all the General Education and CRJ coursework for the AAS/CRJ degree prior to the academy; or 3 years of work experience to include, but not limited to: military service, community-service, or volunteer work; or a 2-3 year sustained work history showing employment periods at a single job lasting at least a year or more in duration (seasonal work excluded).


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3) Will I get college credit for the academy, and does it qualify for financial aid?
You will receive 39 hours of college credit for successfully completing the CCA Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy. ALL 39 hours of that credit will apply to the A.A.S. Criminal Justice degree. Currently, a well-known accredited and nationally respected private university and two state universities also accept the full AAS/CRJ degree, with the full academy credit, in lieu of the first two years of their Bachelors degree programs. In addition, at the completion of the academy, you will receive a CCA program Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy certificate.

The academy qualifies for VA and regular financial aid. For financial aid and VA eligibility questions, contact the college financial aid department at 303-360-4709.
The academy costs about $8,200 for those who qualify for in-state tuition and the COF assistance (college-wide tuition increases may happen each Fall and will affect the actual overall cost of the academy). However, we provide the use of all books, law enforcement gear, weapon, ammo and uniforms in that tuition.  
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4) What arrest control training programs make your academy unique among other academies?
Let's start with our Tactical/Arrest Control training program. You’ve decided to get into police work. If you’ve looked at programs at other Community Colleges, here are some questions you may be asking:

- What is arrest control?

- Why do some programs offer more or less hours than others?

- What does the State of Colorado require in terms of hours for this class?

- Which is the better arrest control system FBI, PPCT, Nova or Koga?

- What do most of the major departments use? 

First of all, thanks for doing your homework. These are important questions.

The Community College of Aurora teaches the Koga Method of Arrest Control.

The Koga System has been carefully put together over decades by Master Martial Artist and retired Los Angeles Police Officer Robert Koga.

Robert Koga is an inductee in the Martial Arts Hall of Fame. He has provided instruction to the U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Army Special Forces, U.S. Navy Seals and the Egyptian Royal Guard. He has been the recipient of the State of California’s Lifetime Achievement Award for his work wit law enforcement. He is the subject of a biography, ROBERT KOGA - THE MAN BEHIND THE LEGEND by John Wintterle and David Yancey. The Koga Institute currently teaches throughout the State of Colorado and throughout North America, Canada and Mexico.

What is Arrest Control?

Let’s first consider what it isn’t.

Arrest Control Techniques (ACT) is not fighting and it is not self-defense. It is largely about leveling the playing field by using tactics and physical advantages. An Arrest Control System should not rely on brute strength. The days of police departments hiring larger males who meet height and weight requirements is long gone. Today’s police departments are diverse.

Arrest Control in the Koga System is largely about searching and handcuffing subjects with a degree of control. Placing your subject in a position where his/her first move cannot harm you and teaching you the legalities regarding contacting suspects. Have you ever wondered about the personal liabilities in police work? Financial and physical liability in law enforcement is immense. The Koga System is arguably the most legally defensible system in the world.

CCA’s arrest control program is roughly divided into 92 hours of pure arrest control including baton techniques, 24 hours of Koga’s self-defense and 24 hours of Shane Pitt’s Ground Tactics System. If you still want more information on Robert Koga, check out his web site;

Who is Shane Pitts?

You can also find a lot of information about Shane on the internet. Shane is the founder of LAW ENFORCEMENT GROUND TACTICS, holder of five black belts in martial arts, a former World Masters Judo Champion, World Combat Jujitsu Association National Champion, and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Pan American Masters Division Champion. The Community College of Aurora was the first police academy in the State of Colorado to include Ground Tactics in its curriculum. Many other academies have followed suit but none offer the amount of training in this area as CCA.

The Community College of Aurora’s Arrest Control Program includes 148 hours of total instruction. The State of Colorado requires 62 hours to be certified as a police officer.

Why the difference?

Minimum training leads to minimum results. We go for maximum results. As you train, so shall you be.

If you want to be a police officer, you need to train. You need to train your mind and your body. 132+ hours of arrest control is the most offered in the State, and reflects the training provided at the Aurora Police Department - our training partner agency.

Comparing the Koga System to FBI, Nova and PPCT is much more than comparing Fords and Chevy’s.

All of these systems have something to offer. Almost twenty years ago, our training partner agency, the Aurora Police Department, looked at all of the arrest control systems available. A committee was formed to evaluate all of the systems and instructors representing those systems provided demonstrations to Aurora’s Committee. After everything was looked at, the FBI Instructor remarked that the Koga System was better, but that it was more difficult.

If Koga is so good, why doesn’t every department use it?

Cost is probably the main issue. City and State governments are budget minded. Koga is the Cadillac of systems and many departments do not want to pay more for the Koga System.

After completing the Arrest Control Training program at CCA, you will most likely have a better understanding of use of force issues than if you had gone through another program; that is a common comment heard from CCA graduates.

As with all our skills training and courses, we provide everything you will need at the academy to excel and train safely and efficiently.

Read the KOGA INSTITUTE story on Robert Koga's passing.

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5) Do I need to be in good physical condition to attend the police academy?

You should be “reasonably fit”. Remember that the training you will receive is preparing you to become a police officer. Different police agencies have different expectations on the fitness levels of their officers; but all would at a minimum expect you to be reasonably fit. Police work can be extremely dangerous, and the potential for physical altercations always exists. Often, we, as skills instructors, have seen a direct correlation between good fitness and better performance in the skills areas of Arrest Control, Driving, and Firearms training.

If you are not in good shape, now is the time to start before the academy begins. Contact the Academy Director for training programs.

As part of the CCA Police Academy's curriculum, you will have at least 28 contact hours of formal physical fitness training directly through PED 112, provided by our academy Certified Personal Trainers.  In addition to the formal fitness training, you will also have weekly fitness homework to be conducted outside of the PED 112 training time.  You will have access to the academy gym and its fully equipped outlay of equipment, free weights and the latest in cardio machines. In addition, as part of their own training program, the Personal Trainer Academy students will evaluate, prescribe and mentor your fitness needs and progress.

If you have any health concerns or are overweight, you MUST CONSULT with a physician prior to engaging in an exercise program. If you are completely unfamiliar with how to exercise, then contact a fitness trainer, or join a fitness facility.

Any fitness regimen should include warming up/stretching, some form of cardiovascular exercise such as jogging/running, swimming, biking, etc., some type of strength training such as weight training or calisthenics, and cooling down/stretching.

Sensible eating goes hand in hand with your fitness goals. Avoid fad diets. If you are significantly overweight, then consult with a nutritionist/dietician for advice and guidance.

Arrest Control involves balance and footwork. You will be bending and squatting often. You will be a training partner for your classmates who will be performing arrest techniques and joint locks on you. You will also be taught takedowns or throws, and how to roll.

Baton training will involve a lot of squatting. You will be taught to strike with power. Power comes from your ability to generate force with your own body. Bench pressing 400 pounds does not automatically mean you will be able to strike with power. Power is generated by proper balance and the ability to involve hip movement into the strike.

Ground Tactics, sometimes improperly referred to as ground fighting, will be the most physically demanding of your skills classes. You will learn how to avoid the ground, get up from the ground, and how to defend yourself while on the ground. While it is similar to wrestling, it is actually based on Jiujitsu. However, our program is tailored specifically for the Police Officer, not a tournament grappler.

So, what is the answer to the question, “Do I need to be in good physical condition to attend the police academy?"

The answer is to come in reasonable condition. Formal physical training is part of the academy via PED 112; however, you must take it upon yourself to ensure that you complete the PED 112 weekly homework and if necessary, remedial fitness training to ensure that you can achieve the standard. Don’t wait until the last moment to decide to start to exercise. By the same token, absolutely all fitness levels and cadets up in their '70s (special situations involving training them for other agencies) have successfully completed CCA’s Police Academy and most would agree that they improved their fitness level while attending the academy.
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6) Is there a difference in the tactical training from one Community College Law Enforcement program to another, and if so, what makes the Community College of Aurora the best choice?

Tactical training, involving such classes like Pedestrian Approaches, Officer Survival, Vehicle Contacts, and Building Searches, will vary from program to program based on a number of issues. However, all Colorado P.O.S.T. certified Law Enforcement Academies must comply with P.O.S.T. standards, goals, and objectives for these classes.

The Community College of Aurora models the vast majority of its training after the City of Aurora, Colorado, Police Department. The tactics taught at CCA mirror the tactics taught at Aurora PD. In fact, the men who developed, implemented, and trained the Aurora Police Department are the very same instructors who will teach you at CCA. Many lateral-transfer officers with extensive experience from a wide variety of agencies around the country have commented that the tactical training they received at Aurora PD was the best training they had ever experienced. You will receive the same tactical training at the Community College of Aurora.

One of the most important factors in selecting a Police Academy is to take a serious look at the backgrounds and experience of the instructors. CCA tactical instructors are current, or former, senior members of the Aurora Police Department SWAT Team with extensive real life experience in both SWAT and Patrol Tactics. Our cadets complement their tactical training with our Simunitions® weapons and gear in our five tactical training scenario sites and a large on-site multi-story building we have sole access to for active shooter, hostage and other high intensity scenarios.
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7) I have never shot a pistol before. Will that affect my ability to do well in this training?

Our firearms instructors have a long history of successfully teaching cadets who have never fired a pistol before. CCA firearms training doctrine is drawn from a variety of sources. Many such sources of valid information, or techniques, are available. However, what is necessary is a “blending” of these pieces of information, or different techniques, in a system that will perform in a variety of circumstances and situations.

Make no mistake about it, the CCA firearms training program is designed to train the student in the LAWFUL use of deadly force, in accordance with law enforcement duties. While many of the concepts and techniques would be applicable to the private citizen or military member, the emphasis is on the responsible use of a firearm by a peace officer.

Students will receive extensive training in the use of a handgun.

SAFETY WILL BE OF THE HIGHEST PRIORITY! This training will consist of a variety of methods to include lecture, demonstration, practical exercises, and a large amount of shooting. Students will be required to demonstrate knowledge and proficiency in the areas of instruction upon demand. Written and practical evaluations will be administered to evaluate this knowledge and proficiency. Qualification courses will be used periodically to evaluate student performance. The final qualification course will consist of the course mandated by P.O.S.T.

This training totals 76 hours. We believe we have the best firearms training program in the state.

That may not seem like a lot; but many will pay hundreds to thousands of dollars for the same quality of instruction on the range CCA will provide you as part of your academy training. Students should expect to fire over 1800 rounds of ammunition during training (student attendance is required for 100% of the required hours). The instructor/student ratio during "Range Activity" will be maintained at one (1) instructor to four (4) students. Rifle and/or shotgun training is NOT a part of this training program.

Many statements have been made about police gunfights. Some are true, some are not.

The only things we know for sure is that they involve guns being fired, and police officers being involved. There is no guarantee that the officer(s) will fire their weapons, only that they will somehow be involved. The issue then, that arises, is how we prepare police officers for the challenges they face in police gunfights. First, we must start with a few ideas regarding “typical” police gunfights:

Gunfights will usually be at close range.

Gunfights will usually happen quickly.

Gunfights will usually result in only a few rounds being fired.

Gunfights may occur in altered, bad or failing light.

Gunfights may involve multiple threats (opponents).

Gunfights may involve movement on the part of the threat(s).

Gunfights SHOULD involve movement on the part of the officer(s).

Communication with the threat, other officers and uninvolved parties will be

WILL YOUR GUNFIGHT BE TYPICAL? If not, we must prepare for other possibilities, as well. We will train you for the "possibilities."

In simple terms, our training is built on the following:

Whenever possible, use both hands on the handgun.

This does NOT preclude shooting with strong or support hand only, in close quarters situations, when using a ballistic shield, or when wounded/injured.

Whenever possible, use the sights on the weapon.

Look AT, FOR, or THROUGH the sights. This does NOT preclude using variations of unsighted firing at close distances, such as when firing from a retention position. So-called “Point Shooting” certainly exists and can be valid, however, within law enforcement the need to ensure where the weapon is pointed (and will shoot) is of the utmost importance, due to safety for the officer(s) and innocent parties.

“It Is What It Is.”

Your fight WON’T be what you think it will be, it will be whatever it is. The key here is “Semper Gumby” (always flexible). Despite our best attempts to anticipate what is going to happen, we will almost always have to react or respond to events as best as we can.

“Shoot, Move, and Communicate”

Essentially, this is self-explanatory. We must HIT our target the best we can. The only objective in shooting is to HIT what you are shooting at. We must be able to move, whether to increase distance from threats, to make ourselves harder to hit, or to move to cover, concealment or better positions. Again, communication with the threat, other officers and uninvolved parties will be necessary.

Training begins with an emphasis on these three areas:

Mindset skills: This includes mental preparedness for combat, psychological preparedness for the results of your actions or inactions, as well as moral, ethical and legal responsibilities. This typically involves a change in your thinking from “I can’t believe this is happening to me” to “I KNEW this was going to happen and I KNOW what to do”.

Gunhandling skills: Your ability to “run” your weapon system. Manipulation, or “skill at arms”, is often what separates the casual shooter from the person who is truly prepared. These skills include loading and unloading, drawing and returning the weapon to the holster, reloads, and clearing stoppages or malfunctions.

Marksmanship skills: Your ability to deliver accurate fire against threats, without endangering other officers and innocent parties, from a variety of distances, and at a variety of speeds. “Shoot carefully, as fast you can safely".

Use of cover, different shooting positions, low-light skills, shooter movement and decision-making, as well as engagement of moving targets are necessary skills and are all heavily covered and included within the firearms training program.

To defray your initial academy costs, and to provide maximum safety for all cadets, CCA provides all equipment necessary for the training, to include the following:

Glock model 17 9MM pistol and three (3) magazines for each student

Training ammunition

Duty belt, including holster, magazine pouch, inner belt and keepers

Electronic ear protection and eye protection

Cleaning supplies and equipment

All potential cadets need to supply these:

Open mind

Willingness to learn and be taught

State of mental and physical preparedness.

In all your training at the Academy, whether in the classroom, the gym or in a tactical training scenario, we promise you we will provide you with the best set of skills you will need to be safe and secure on the streets.
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8) Who do I contact for more information about the academy, or to apply to it?


Who do I contact for more information about the CRJ degree/certificate programs?

Contact the Academy Director, Michael Carter, at 303-880-2088, or by email at; or the academy Program Assistant, Cindy Smith, at 303-340-7070, or by email to:

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