Monday, April 28, 2014

Napolcom-Bicol wants more Criminology graduates in police service (Feature)
By Danny O. Calleja

LEGAZPI CITY, April 27 (PNA) -- Hilda is a nursing graduate while Jeffrey finished a course in business management. Both are in police service frequently assigned to man the flow of traffic in busy thoroughfares of the city.

Marvin, on the other hand, who is a graduate of criminology, the sociological study of crime, criminals and the punishment of criminals and should be in the place of Hilda or Jeffrey, now works as a call center agent, also here.

Asked why they are in there, Hilda told the PNA over the weekend: “It’s better here than working as a nurse. The entry and training may be difficult but the work is easy and high-paying for a woman like me.”

For Jeffrey: “I applied to become a policeman because I see a good future in here. I still want to engage myself in business based on my course after I raise money for capital out of my salary in the PNP.”

Marvin said he tried entering the police service immediately after graduating last year but he failed the interviews.

All three requested that their full name be withheld from publication.

The jobs where these young college graduates, especially the case of the latter, have landed show a discrepancy, which the regional office for Bicol of the National Police Commission (Napolcom) is seeking to address.

Data obtained recently from the same office have it that the present composition of the younger generation of policemen in the region is dominated by graduates of nursing, education, commerce and business administration.

Based on the records of the regional office of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Bicol on its recruitment and training classes for the period between December 2010 and December 2013, criminology graduates comprised only 42.26 percent or 767 entrants compared to 57.74 percent or 1,048 who graduated from other courses, according to Napolcom Regional Director Rodolfo Santos Jr.

The period, Santos said, covered the Public Safety Field Training Program classes that are composed of six batches wherein nursing graduates dominated the recruits totaling 259; followed by graduates of education, 209; commerce and business administration,154; and Bachelor of Arts, 110.

These courses comprise the top four leading non-criminology programs in the last six recruitment periods and selection for entry in the police organization, he said.

“This simply indicates a diminishing number of Bachelors of Science in Criminology graduates in the region’s police service, which can end up being occupied by graduates from other courses not related to law enforcement,” Santos lamented.

He also revealed that in the conduct of recruitment evaluation and screening, graduates from other courses registered higher passing average than criminology graduates during the same recruitment period that resulted in other courses representing majority of the applicants and recruits in the police service.

It was also seen in a Napolcom study, according to Santos, that most of the criminology graduates in the region did not apply immediately for recruitment to the PNP service as they preferred other employments like security guards, call center agents and as Overseas Filipino Workers, among others.

One reason for this, he said, is that in most occasions, the criminology graduates who applied for entry in the police service have difficulties in communicating and explaining their knowledge and theories during the panel interviews, which are part of the screening process.

Disturbed by these findings, Santos said, his office has launched a project called “Post on-the-job training (OJT) for Graduating Criminology Students,” in response to the necessity of helping schools in the region prepare their students of relevant minimum qualifications for entry in the police service.

He said they have started with the Central Bicol State University of Agriculture (CBSUA) College of Criminology in Sipocot, Camarines Sur, as the project’s pilot institution.

Part of the implementation of the project in CBSUA, Santos said, is the evaluation of graduating criminology students simulating an actual panel interview for police applicants for them to directly experience what transpire in the actual recruitment process.

Napolcom’s methodology being applied in the project would make all students under the mandatory OJT in police stations to be required to submit reports to include the extent of their learning on subjects like traffic management, crowd control, patrolling, criminal detection and investigation, among others, prior to their OJT.

After the OJT, they will be required to submit written articles on their impression on the police station’s system of teaching and transfer of actual information and knowledge on the same subjects as well as the knowledge and skills gained.

The post-OJT report will be the basis of another evaluation to be conducted by a Napolcom panel in the presence of the students’ instructors to determine and validate the improvement of their skills and knowledge on the subject areas.

This process will also be part of the pre-graduation evaluation of the students, Santos said.

Results of the project implementation in CBSUA will then be the basis for further enhancement of the program that will be recommended to CHED for adoption in criminology schools across the region, he added. (PNA) CTB/FGS/DOC/CBD/RSM