New Mexico’s police departments were chronically understaffed, but officials thought veterans in need of jobs might offer a solution. The New Mexico Department of Public Safety carefully studied the training regimen for military police, and found that about ten years ago, the military changed its training methods to more closely match those used for civilian police. They decided to create a new program for veterans who’d served in military law enforcement, called Transition With Honor, giving them the chance to qualify as civilian police officers by taking a free one-week course, followed by a test, compared with four months of classes non-veterans must take to join the force.
Mike Sine is the first veteran to take advantage of this program. He served at Kirtland Air Force Base as a military policeman, and enrolled in the program after he left the Air Force. He found a job as a police officer in Bosque Farms, south of Albuquerque, just two months after completing the fast-track program.
Now, he’s spreading the word to other veterans. “Hopefully, I’ll be helping a lot of people on base make the transition,” Sine told Charles D. Brunt of the Albuquerque Journal. “Some of my old coworkers have been contacting me, so hopefully that program will continue to expand.”