New Jersey Police Chiefs Association Signs Historic Agreement with England's College of Policing
For Immediate Release: May 27, 2014
[Marlton, NJ] The New Jersey State Association of Chiefs of Police [NJSACOP] has entered into a formal exchange agreement with the College of Policing, the professional body for police in England and Wales. Under this “Police Leadership and Professional Development Exchange Program,” the College and the NJSACOP will exchange and host appropriate individuals to attend and instruct at professional development and training seminars for police executives. As outlined in the agreement, the specific objectives of this new exchange program include “enhancing the quality of policing education and training programs for both parties, specifically around Leadership.” This new collaboration will also offer outstanding professional development opportunities for the exchange Fellows.
For over 50 years, the Bramshill Staff College and its international team have had the unique privilege and opportunity to work with the best and brightest of officers, staff and organizations from across the world in the pursuit of excellence in policing leadership and command. Now part of the UK College of Policing, the institution’s modern mission to enhance the capability of leaders and operational practitioners to deliver effective public safety, according to Kurt Eyre, Head of the International Academy and Head of Centre at the College, “undoubtedly requires a more global, collegiate and integrated perspective and willingness to search, share and impart knowledge across policing, both in educational and operational terms.”
This focus is right in line with the NJSACOP’s core mission to “promote and enhance the highest ethical and professional standards in law enforcement at all levels throughout New Jersey.” In reaching out the College, the NJSACOP found a partner with a similar outlook and mandate. NJSACOP Executive Director Mitchell Sklar addressed the genesis of this new cross-border relationship: “For over 100 years our Association’s focus has been to provide police leaders in our state with the best tools and most advanced opportunities to develop themselves and their colleagues as police executives. While looking for a partner to bring new perspectives to our professional development portfolio, I quickly identified the College as the institution that would be most compatible with our goals and mission, as well as a provider of world-class police education and a leader in the setting of professional standards and practice.”
The agreement, in the form of a Memorandum of Understanding [MoU] became effective in May 2014, with the first exchange of Fellows to be coordinated in the near future. Each organization will be responsible for selecting the Fellows that they will send to the other partner, but under an agreed upon criteria for candidate selection. In short, the selected Fellows must exhibit a “sound appreciation of current and future trends in policing, criminal justice policy or criminology research…strong research skills…[and] evidence of significant teaching experience at the appropriate level."
NJSACOP Executive Director Sklar indicated that the MoU has been developing informal ly over the past several years, including the College sending participants and instructors to the NJSACOP Executive Institute. “The New Jersey attendees really benefited not only from the instruction they received from our colleagues from the UK, but also from the interaction with them, both in and out of the classroom.” He also had high praise for the College’s leadership curriculum. “I had the good fortune to attend the Foundation for Senior Leaders seminar at the College, and cannot say enough about not only the coursework, but in particular the interaction with the faculty and my classmates. The Fellows that we select and send to the College will have a career-highlight experience. Just as importantly, their departments, their colleagues, and their communities will reap the benefits of that experience in countless ways."
The College’s International Academy chief Eyre took a broad view of the benefits of this type of agreement. “Nations and their respective policing organizations are indeed searching each other out with a keen focus to deliver that more effective public service.” He expressed the strong belief that the College will see long term benefits from the new, formal working agreement with the NJSACOP. “For us here at the College of Policing, to have now met and established the relationship we have with the NJSACOP, has been a real highlight and itself is an example of best practice. As has been the chance to develop this MoU alongside Mitch Sklar, the Executive Director and dynamic ambassador for the NJSACOP, a true leader and professional who we're proud to be associated with and with whom we see this as the start of a long and fruitful partnership.”
The admiration is clearly mutual. According to Director Sklar, “It’s a true honor for us to be associated with an institution with the well earned and truly well deserved international reputation that the College of Policing enjoys. Kurt is a consummate professional with a great vision. He was able to take a concept and shape it into a workable, viable and mutually beneficial arrangement. In fact, I cannot speak highly enough about his whole team, especially Director of Open Programmes Simon Stevenson and International Police Advisor, Detective Chief Inspector Dave Annets. The policing profession as a whole is better because of their efforts."
The initial term of the MoU is for three years, after which both organizations will conduct internal reviews. Assuming that both partners are fully satisfied with the exchange program, they anticipate that the agreement will be reviewed every three years thereafter.