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CJ summer training included time at practice range
8 August 2011

Edward Cadotte squeezing off practice rounds June 27 with an AR-15.

BISMARCK (UTN) - Students who took CJU 225 during the summer term at United Tribes should have some interesting stories to tell. The course title gives a hint as to what they were up to: “Weapons and Physical Fitness Training.”

      “This class is designed to give the student a better understanding of the physical rigors of a peace officer’s job,” says Mark Wallevand, UTTC Criminal Justice Instructor.

      The term “physical rigors” in that description implies something other than long classroom lectures where students are seated comfortably in their chairs. Instead, Wallevand had them running timed distances on the college campus and tossing sandbags during the local flood emergency fight along the Missouri River.

      The highlight (and reward) of the eight-week session was the opportunity for weapons training at a local firearms range.

      Unlike many criminal justice courses across the nation, Wallevand says UTTC’s commitment to hands on training gives students an opportunity they may not have at this stage of their training elsewhere. The outing is offered only at select times during the academic year.

Checking target results Kyle Leaf, at left, and Anthony Walker; nearby Gayla Little Dog; in background Randy Two Crow and Salli McCarty. DENNIS J. NEUMANN United Tribes News

      A June 27 outing featured the AR-15 rifle, commonly used by law enforcement. Wallevand supervised all aspects of the 90 minute, live-fire session, which had been preceded by classroom training and familiarization with the weapon.

      On the firing line his commands were clear and authoritative; the student mood businesslike with a hint of excitement. Clearly everyone was engaged.

      “It’s a fun course,” says Wallevand. “It also teaches the necessity and importance for safe weapons handling. And it gives confidence to those who've never had experience with firearms, or who had negative experiences.”

      Students also have the opportunity to train with other commonly-used law enforcement firearms, including Glock and Smith & Wesson pistols, and the Remington pump shotgun.

      “This fits into our curriculum,” says Wallevand. “After the badge, a peace officer’s weapon is the most significant sign of an officer’s authority granted by the government.”


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