Citizens Police Academy

The Citizens Police Academy provides residents and business people with a behind-the-scenes look at local law enforcement.  Hundreds of residents have completed the Citizens Police Academy since the Police Department first offered the program in 2000.  The nine-week program is typically held twice a year, in the spring and fall.  The class meets Monday evenings from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. to learn about topics such as crime scene investigation, defensive driving, gun safety, domestic violence and crime prevention.

MBPD is currently taking applications for the 40th Session of CPA that will begin on Monday, June 6, 2022.

The Police Department accepts applications for the Citizens Police Academy twice a year, as announced.  Here are the application criteria.

  • Applicants must be at least 21 years old.
  • Applicants must live or work in Horry County.  Residents of Myrtle Beach will receive first preference.
  • Applicants must complete a personal history form.
  • Applicants must undergo a background investigation and a criminal history check.
  • Applicants must complete a minimum of 3 hours of ride-along/work-along time, including five hours on day shift, five hours on evening shift, five hours on overnight shift, five hours with Special Operations or Beach Patrol and five hours observing dispatch and service desk. Participation in the optional Saturday class decreases the number of required hours.
  • Applicants must attend at least eight of the 10 meetings to graduate.

In addition, Academy participants must complete at least 3 hours of ride-along and work-along time with Myrtle Beach police officers and personnel.  Students arrange these sessions at their convenience. After all, the Myrtle Beach Police Department is a 24-hour a day operation.  Academy participants also learn to use the firearms training simulator, a room-sized video experience.

The Citizens Police Academy is not designed to turn you into a police officer, but it will give you an appreciation of what law enforcement officers do and the decisions they must make.  An optional Saturday class allows time for special (fun) topics, and graduation ceremonies are held at the end of the course.

Questions? Contact Sgt. Jeff Thomas at 843-918-1906 or via email at

Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association

After completing the Citizens Police Academy, many members have joined together to continue to support the Myrtle Beach Police Department as well as the Myrtle Beach community by joining together. In 2014, members of several past Academy classes joined together to form the Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association. Together these members have supported the department throughout the year from providing meals during the holidays to assisting with events like parades, National Night Out as well as other needs of the department and the City. If you have successfully completed the Myrtle Beach Police Department’s Citizens Police Academy and are interested in becoming a member of the Myrtle Beach Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association, please go to the for more information. The application is also attached.

Application Download »

Please return your application to Jess Rodriguez at or submitted by mail to 3340 Mustang St., Myrtle Beach, SC 29577, att Jess Rodriguez no later than Monday, May 2, 2022, at 5 p.m.