BTI Criminal Justice student Jesus Santiago will be the newest member of the Reading Police Department on Monday July 23rd.
At only 23 years old and a fresh graduate of the 20-week Reading Police Academy, Jesus Santiago has made an impression on his instructors from day one. “After 30 years in law enforcement, when I think of what attributes a young officer entering the field should possess, Jesus immediately comes to mind. I’m very proud of his achievements,” remarked BTI Director of Education Jon Schneider. “He is what a police officer looks like.” Jon knows because he is also a retired Police Lieutenant with the City of Durham, NC and brings that insight to the students.
Jesus is originally from Laureldale and a Muhlenberg High alumnus. Jesus always wanted to be a police officer and BTI provided him a unique opportunity.
Locally, BTI is the only 2-year college that has an agreement with the Reading Police Academy and Jesus is a perfect example of the successful partnership. The Academy accepts BTI students upon recommendation from the school placing current BTI students in a beneficial position as compared to the general public. Recommendations do not come easily though. Students must maintain a B-Average and have impeccable attendance, as well as be a student for at least one year. Jesus met and exceeded these expectations and was a top recommendation to the Academy.
Once at the Academy Santiago excelled and passed all required testing needed for graduation including the rigorous ACT 120 certification in the Commonwealth of PA. He also took home the top physical fitness award in his class. “The Academy was really tough both physically and mentally but it was worth the effort because I am on my way to a promising new career,” shared Jesus.
Lieutenant Weidner runs the Academy and had strong words of support for Jesus and BTI. He was very motivated and definitely an upbeat individual and a great student. He was a team leader throughout his time here and is certainly a credit to the Criminal Justice program at BTI. We were excited to hire him.”
Jesus begins his career as a member of the Reading Police Department in only a few days. His Hispanic background and bi-lingual capability make him a great fit for the position. As Jon Schneider mentioned “a police force should be representative of the city it serves and Jesus fits the bill.” With his new career ahead of him, Jesus still understands the importance of education. Even after his job offer, he will be returning to the classroom at BTI to complete the remainder of his Associates Degree in Criminal Justice.