The College of North East Londons BTEC in Public Services gives police, army and fire service hopefuls the best possible start on the path to an adrenaline-filled career.
Everald Williams, 34, is testimony to that. He completed the programme with distinction and is currently working his way up the Metropolitan Police ladder.
Currently a Special Constable, father of four Everald, of Tiverton Estate, Tottenham, is soon to begin a paid full-time position as a Police Community Support Officer. His application to become a full-blown Police Officer should be completed by next year.
It had always been Everalds ambition to work within the law. Unfortunately, things did not go smoothly to start with. His application to the Metropolitan Police was rejected three times.
However, Determination is my middle name and I never give up, says Everald, who took himself down to Tottenham Police Station and introduced himself to a Detective Sergeant, who told him to apply for a place on CONELs innovative programme.
The course really did give me a deeper understanding of how the police work. It gives you a totally different perspective.
It doesnt guarantee you a place but it gives you a real edge. You get to meet serving officers and the top people in the job which gives you so much more confidence.
After 18 weekends of intense training at Hendon Police Training Centre, Everald recently started patrolling with full-time officers from Stoke Newington Police Station.
One of my first call outs was to an armed robbery in Stamford Hill. I was in a police car with some other officers and we just shot off towards the scene. I wasnt scared but I was amazed at the speed we were travelling.
It was so exciting and such an adrenaline rush. It was like something out of a movie!
Another recent incident resulted in Everald chasing a man on foot down a canal path. The suspect leapt into the water to get away from him but quickly realised he was never going to make it to the other side and climbed out into some bushes.
CONELS CRIME FIGHTER 2
I actually went and pulled him out of the bushes. He was dripping wet and me and my colleague arrested him. He had been suspected of committing grievous bodily harm against a woman and it felt good to catch him.
Another perk is being on duty at West Ham football ground on match days. Although hes an Arsenal fan, Everald thoroughly enjoys being able to watch the game from a privileged position!
I would really recommend the course to anyone who is thinking of a career in any of the public services.
Its been a real step up for me. Im so pleased with what I have achieved and my kids are so proud of me. My ten year old son wants to be a police officer now. Im glad Im able to set that kind of example.
The BTEC Public Services First Diploma is a one year course gives an insight into how uniformed organisations work and what their entry procedures are, as well as academic training in a range of subjects including Citizenship, Fitness, Community and Cultural Awareness and specific Public Service skills.
This qualification is supported and partly taught by Haringey Police, with input from the London Fire Brigade and other specialists.
Anyone who would like more information, ring tutor Gordon Williams on 020 8442 3801 or come to a special Open Day at CONELs Tottenham Centre on July 23, from 4pm to 7pm. The event, part of the Curriculum 2000 Open Day, will take place in the Pavilion. Come to reception for directions.
- Last Updated: 08 November 2003