On June 5, Chief J. Michael Ragan of Texas A&M University Police Department swore in five new officers, who all recently completed the Central Texas Police Academy’s 164th Basic Peace Officer Course.
Reporting for duty for the first time on June 10, Jacob Fuller, Benjamin Leahy, Zachery McPhail, Evan Ross and Matthew Yevcak began their field training. The officers will spend the next 18 weeks learning from their paired field training officers on how to serve as a UPD officer.
Fuller, Class of 2015, said he first got interested in a career in law enforcement after volunteering as a first responder for the A&M Emergency Care Team.
“From there it slowly evolved to my interest in law enforcement,” Fuller said. “I like the idea of being able to help protect the members of the university and give back a little bit to the entity that gave so much to me.”
Fuller said that what drew him to be a member of the UPD was how the university educates all the officers on how to give back to the community they are protecting.
“I feel like the education that they provide helps the officers to provide a much better service to the community,” Fuller said.
Leahy, Class of 2012, has a background as both a firefighter and an EMS. He said having a career in law enforcement has always been a passion of his, and is now being trained by the UPD on how to keep others safe by looking out for certain hazards.
“As an officer here at UPD, we’re trained appropriately to respond to those hazards and we’re able to show others how to appropriately respond to those hazards as well,’’ Leahy said.
Yevcak was drawn to law enforcement because of his family’s history in the field.
“I have some family in law enforcement, especially my granddad. He was a cop for many years and so I just kind of wanted to uphold the family tradition,” Yevcak said.
For Yevcak, being a police officer for the UPD means continuing to keep the university a safe learning environment for both the faculty and the students.
“[I’m] just making sure that they can get a good education and leave here with their degrees and not have to worry about any theft or any other crimes while they’re here,” Yevcak said.
Leahy said being an officer for the UPD allows him to give back to his alma mater and the Aggie family.
“Being a part of the Aggie family myself, it’s always been a great honor,” Leahy said. “Having the ability to give back to the Aggie family that’s given me so much is always an honor.”