Ten cadets who recently completed the 8th Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy at Edgecombe Community College. The graduates from left are Alexander Anthony, Justin Rodriguez, Robert Friedrich, Jehove Santiago-Ramirez, Melissa Webb, Ronda Byrd, Karena Velasco, Ja’Dasia Cutler, Myrio Harvey and Jamirus Taylor.

The Basic Law Enforcement Training Academy at Edgecombe Community College has received the state’s stamp of approval to continue to train students.

The N.C. Criminal Justice Education and Training Standards Commission recently renewed the BLET program’s accreditation. The program first received accreditation in 2015.

The commission conducted an accreditation renewal audit and found no deficiencies.

“We are very pleased that our accreditation has been renewed and that we are approved to continue to train students and support law enforcement in our area,” said Bernie Taylor, BLET director and coordinator of law enforcement in-service training at ECC. “We are proud that our administrative, facility, instructor and student requirements were all met without a single issue.”

The 20-week program prepares students for entry-level employment in law enforcement. The rigorous hands-on training emphasizes high-risk calls, and students receive certification in tasers, expandable batons and pepper spray.

Additional hours in Officer Survival Training are provided. Successful graduates of the BLET program receive 18 credits toward an associate degree in criminal justice at ECC.

Since the program began in 2015, eight BLET academies have been held, and 89 cadets have completed the program.

The eighth academy just ended, and the ninth academy is slated to begin Sept. 2.

The eighth academy began Feb. 3. When COVID-19 restrictions were put into place statewide in March, law enforcement training was among the programs allowed to continue to accommodate the critical need for public safety services during the pandemic.

To learn more about the BLET program at ECC, contact or 252-615-6613.