Members of the Brookfield Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association help a young shopper during the 2015 Shop with a Cop program sponsored by the police department. (Courtesy of the Brookfield Police Department)

The Brookfield Police Department is looking for residents to take part in its next Citizens Police Academy, which is scheduled to start Feb. 25.

By attending the Citizens Police Academy, you won’t obtain actual police powers, but you will get a thorough understanding of how law enforcement professionals operate and, in particular, how your local department works.

“We want people to better understand not just what’s involved in police work, but how the Brookfield Police Department deals with residents on a day-to-day basis,” said Officer David Kudla, the program’s coordinator.

During the 10-week program, which will be held at the Brookfield Police Department, 8820 Brookfield Ave., participants will receive instruction by police experts on a number of topics, including self-defense, traffic stops, terrorism, firearms, investigations, criminal law, patrol techniques, auto theft and SWAT.

Many participants of past citizens academies, which began in Brookfield in 2008, have gone on to become members of the Brookfield Police Citizens Academy Alumni Association, which meets monthly, raises funds to purchase police equipment and helps coordinate department events, such as the annual bike rodeo, the Shop with a Cop holiday gift buying program, and the Special Olympics fundraiser.

The class is open to all Brookfield residents and/or business owners age 18 and over. Classes will run on Thursdays from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., ending on April 28. Applications are available by visiting the Brookfield Police Department’s website and downloading a form. Or, you may pick up an application at the police department front desk.

Completed applications need to be returned to the police department by Friday, Feb. 12. Police will conduct a routine background check on all applicants, who also must sign a liability waiver.

There is no cost to participate in the program. For more information, contact Deputy Police Chief Edward Petrak at 708-485-1742.