Pictured above with Academy staff are Southern Marylands newest correctional officers.
Click for larger image. (Submitted photo)
LA PLATA, Md. (Oct. 1, 2008)—The Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy celebrated the graduation of 17 correctional officers and two support services personnel at a ceremony held Sept. 19 at North Point High School for Science, Technology and Industry.
The correctional officers completed a 10-week training program which began July 14. Seven of the graduating officers joined the Charles County Sheriffs Office, seven joined the Calvert County Sheriffs Office and three joined the St. Marys County Sheriffs Office.
At the ceremony, Academy instructors presented awards to students who excelled in two categories. Jeremy Hall of the Charles County Sheriffs Office earned the scholastic award, having achieved a 97.69 percent grade point average. Timothy Shomper of the St. Marys County Sheriffs Office earned the physical fitness award, scoring 652 out of 800 possible points.
The class boasted a 95 percent final class academic average. Their class motto, chosen by the students at the beginning of the training program, was Courage without Fear.
Louis Schmidt, deputy director the Planning and Accreditation for the Charles County Sheriffs Office and a retired Prince Georges County police officer, was the keynote speaker for the ceremony.
Nicholas Valltos of the Legal Studies Department at the College of Southern Maryland spoke about the articulation agreement between the Academy and the College, which provides each graduate with six college credits toward a criminal justice degree.
John Lewis, chaplain for the Charles County Detention Center and one of the support services personnel who participated in the class, delivered the invocation and benediction. Mark Radcliff, correctional coordinator for the Maryland Police and Correctional Training Commissioners, shared opening remarks.
The Academys Board of Directors Charles County Sheriff Rex Coffey, St. Marys County Sheriff Tim Cameron and Calvert County Sheriff Mike Evans, the boards president and the class speaker, Calvert County Correctional Officer Herchel Wilder also addressed the graduates.
M. Justin Hancock sang the national anthem and the Charles County Detention Centers Honor Guard presented the colors.
The following correctional officers are the recent graduates of the Southern Maryland Criminal Justice Academy:
Richard E. Allen
Anthony M. Mitchell
Charles Quade, Jr.
Christopher S. Gray
Regina L. Hooper
Thomas N. Mohler, V
Kenneth O. Napier
Kevin R. Scott
David L. Unkle
Herchel C. Wilder, III
St. Marys County
Brandon D. Altvater
Timothy J. Shomper
Earl W. Young