SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio police say that of the entire department only 12 percent are women, so in an effort to recruit more women to the force, they are holding a policing event on Saturday.
The event is free, and open to the public.
“I like the idea of making a difference in someone’s life and being there during a very crucial moment and just being support,” SAPD cadet Natalie Weseloh said. “It’s definitely intense.”
Weseloh signed up after last year’s “Women in Policing” event.
“It definitely helps you realize from just all types of officers on different units. And it shows just like, wow, how powerful women really are and where they can be on the department,” Weseloh said.
Part of the event is the obstacle course, which actually helps with recruiting.
“Current recruiting is going pretty well. We had 110 applications just this past month,” SAPD officer Rickeesia Moore said. “The obstacle course is the hiring physical. So it’s one of the first things they are going to have to do after they submit that application. They’ll come in and they’ll run this as a physical to see if they are physically prepared for what the academy is going to be like.”
And there’s not just an obstacle course at the event. People can partake in what’s being called a “hot run.”
“So we’re taking the civilian driver and creating performance up emergency operations operators. It seems like a very easy task, one would think. But it changes things when those lights and sirens go on,” Officer Alisia Pruneda said. “Our whole objective is to get the confidence of the cadet to a level so that they have the desire to know if I get called to a cold call, I can get there safe. Because you can’t save the day, if you can’t make the scene.”
It is meant to be informational, challenging, and at least for those in the car, entertaining.
“I think that we really do add a level of intensity. There’s a complexity to our thought in how we problem solve. And we really are amazing, precise drivers. I think the women that come to the event need to see the potential, what’s expected and they really need to challenge themselves and we will get you there,” Pruneda said.
And as for Natalie, she said she is ready to step up and help out the city.
“I think that women can make a powerful difference in SAPD and the community,” Weseloh said.
For information on SAPD’s “Women in Policing” event, click here.