Meet Recruit Kathryn Yost on Week One

Welcome to the wonderful world of Law Enforcement!  This experience brought to you by recruit Kathryn Yost. 

I would like to start by introducing myself and giving a little background information.  I am a 9-year Army Veteran; a medic to be specific.  I have a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and am enrolled in the Master’s of Criminal Justice program at the University of Colorado at Denver. Of course, I will be postponing my graduate school studies whilst I attend the academy.  I first began the academy in January of 2013, completed the first two weeks, and was called back to perform my duties as a soldier.  I was graciously accepted back into the program in July upon my separation from military service in May.  That being said, I feel very lucky to be a part of this program and a public servant trainee in general. 

Even coming from a background of diverse military service (albeit my experience was far from infantry), the first few days of the first week of the rest of my life were incredible stressful.  This academy is built to accommodate a plethora of local agencies.  There are representatives from Golden, Lakewood, Arvada, Westminster, Littleton, Arapahoe County, Douglas County, and Jefferson County (please forgive me if I have forgotten one).  The lot of us (48) oriented to the academy the Thursday before “week one” and the 24 of us chosen to represent Jefferson County oriented to the jail that Friday.  The group dynamic was instantly one of camaraderie and acceptance.  I used to say that I have never made friends quicker and kept them longer than the ones I made in the Army.  This seems to be the case for Law Enforcement as well.  We may not share the same or even similar backgrounds, but we have a common goal that unites us and a core set of values that we share.

The first “real” academy day began on July 15th.  We were instantly thrown into lessons on drill and ceremony: how to stand in formation, preparatory commands and commands of execution, etc…., expectations on professionalism and bearing, academy rules and regulations, and the wellness program at the academy.  For all the military personnel in the audience, wellness is equivalent to physical fitness.  Between the classroom education blocks, we were given a “fit test.”  I don’t want to give too much away, but suffice it to say, we were all sore for the next few days.  Queue the military cliché: pain is just weakness leaving the body.  Truth. 

The rest of the week was dedicated to settling in (quickly), studying everything from the U.S. Constitution and judicial process to ethics and leadership traits, and more wellness training.  Friday marked the first of many milestones: our first test!  I will save the reader any further concern and tell you that all 48 of us passed.  Three of the recruits received perfect 100% scores.


This week has been exciting, stressful, and worth it.  I wake up each day thankful that I have been chosen for this program and this profession.

At the end of week one these are my conclusions:

1) This program is not for the weak minded or the lazy.

2) You must pay attention in class and study incessantly.

3) The other recruits are just as ready (and most likely just as competitive) as you and they are your allies.

4) The instructors are the best qualified for this job, very supportive, and put up with little to no shenanigans. They can and should be trusted.

It is apparent that I have found like people to share these next few (21) weeks with and I look forward to what lies in store.


  1. Recruit Yost,
    It brings me great pride to learn of your accomplishments in what appears to be one fine organization. Remember to always trust your training, equipment, and department.
    Best of wishes!

  2. my 14 year old daughter just got accepted into the criminal justice program at the high school I'm worried as a mother should I support her or try to guide her somewhere elseI need to know she's making the right choice on the other hand it is her choice I'm so confused

    1. We would be more than happy to ease your fears. If you'd like send us an email to and we'll chat. We'd be happy to pair you with Deputy Yost for a conversation as well.


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