Working with Local Youth
The Ithaca Police Explorer Post #392
IPD Explorer Post #392 was formed in 1997 to offer young adults, between the ages of 14 and 21, the opportunity to learn about law enforcement as a career option. Police officers and parent/adult volunteers supervise the Explorers. The Post meets every Monday from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. during the year. It provides experiences to help young people mature and to prepare them to become responsible and caring adults.
Former IPD Officer Tony Scaglione was integral in starting the program. Officers Christine Barksdale and Greg Firman, who were both assigned to the Neighborhood Policing Unit, were also involved in scheduling events and providing classroom instruction. Post members take part in the Department's "ride-along program" with on duty police officers following patrol operations training. Explorers also learn firearms safety, courtroom procedures, and much more. Officer Scaglione Officer Barksdale, and Officer Firman assumed other duties and in the fall of 2009 the program ceased operations.
In the spring of 2015 the IPD Explorers Post program was revitalized. Officer Richard Niemi and Officer Michaela Conrad supervise and administer the program. The Explorers provide assistance with traffic control during special events and at accident scenes, as well as crime prevention events assisting with fingerprinting children and distributing information. They also assist officers on patrol by obtaining information from witnesses and victims, and receive CPR and First Aid training.
Members raise funds throughout the year to pay for expenses including attendance of the National Conference.
We have recently created a Youth Liaison within the Department and have named Officer Michaela Conrad to lead this initiative. The Youth Liaison is a link within the Department to young people in the community. This includes:
- Visits to the local schools to form positive connections with our local youth
- Being a point of contact for youths who would like to speak to an officer
- A point of contact for parents in the community
- A person who can help recruit youth into law enforcement
- Other related duties that may be developed
About our Youth Liaison
Officer Michaela Conrad is starting her 10th year with the Ithaca Police Department in March of this year. She was raised in Spencer, NY, with strong ties to the Ithaca community. Officer Conrad graduated from Spencer-Van Etten High School in 2006, and then continued her education by receiving a Bachelors in Criminal Justice from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2009. Officer Conrad continued her Masters Education in Criminal Justice through Buffalo State College until March 2011, when she was hired with the the Ithaca Police Department.
Officer Conrad is currently a Field Training Officer, a PT and General Topics Instructor, Committee Chairperson of the Police Explorer Program and has recently been selected for the newly created Youth Liaison Position within the department.
Officer Conrad is excited to strengthen youth and community relations with the Ithaca Police Department.