Pennsylvania State Police Opens College Credit-Free Cadet Applications

The Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) has initiated a new cadet application cycle, eliminating the college credit requirement for individuals aspiring to pursue careers as state troopers. This adjustment comes after a successful experience in the previous hiring cycle, where the waiver of the educational prerequisite led to a notable increase in cadet applicants.

Colonel Christopher Paris, Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police, expressed satisfaction with the streamlined process, stating, “We streamlined the process for those who want to serve as state troopers, and we’re pleased to see people taking advantage of this opportunity. If you’re willing to work hard to make our communities safer and possess the qualities we value, college credits will not stand between you and a rewarding career among our ranks.”

Governor Shapiro directed the PSP to suspend the educational requirement of 60 college credits on August 28 for a two-month hiring cycle. This initiative resulted in 1,545 eligible cadet applications. During subsequent stages, 1,074 candidates took the written examination, with 1,054 advancing to the next phase.

Among the applicants, 624 individuals who would have been ineligible due to the college credit requirement were now able to apply. In contrast, a six-month hiring cycle that mandated college credits, starting on February 1, 2023, received 1,374 eligible applications, and only 898 candidates took the written exam.

During the six-month period with a college credit requirement, an average of 150 individuals per month took the state trooper exam. In the two-month period without the requirement, this number increased to 537 applicants per month, marking a 258% surge in those seeking to become state troopers.

The current application cycle remains open until January 31, 2024. Eligible cadet applicants must hold a high school diploma or GED certificate, possess a valid driver’s license from any state, and be at least 20 years old at the time of application. They must also be between 21 and 40 years old upon entry into the training academy, Pennsylvania residents, and possess a valid Pennsylvania driver’s license at the time of graduation.

Applicants meeting these criteria proceed to a qualifying written examination, followed by a polygraph examination, background investigation, physical readiness test, medical screening, and psychological screening before entering the academy. Cadet training spans approximately 28 weeks and covers various topics, including Pennsylvania’s crimes and vehicle codes, law enforcement principles, firearms and special equipment training, and physical fitness activities.

Upon completing the training academy, cadets are promoted to troopers with a corresponding salary increase, currently set at $66,911 annually.

Governor Josh Shapiro, on his first full day in office, emphasized that 92 percent of state government jobs, approximately 65,000 positions, do not require a four-year college degree. He also directed all state agencies under his jurisdiction to prioritize work experience in their hiring processes.

For more information on becoming a Pennsylvania State Police trooper, visit To apply for the current hiring cycle, visit

For additional details on the Pennsylvania State Police, visit

Contact: Lt. Adam Reed or Myles Snyder Phone: 717-783-5556 Email:


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John O Freeman 1935-2023

Mr. Freeman served with the 101st Airborne where he was stationed in France for 2 ½ years. He enjoyed woodworking, splitting wood and carpentry.

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