May 13, 2019
Clifton "Cliff" Hales, a recently retired administrative Captain and 28-year veteran of the Washington Police Department (WPD) in Washington, N.C., has been selected as the new Coordinator of Martin Community College's (MCC) Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET) program. He started on May 1.
During his service with the WPD, Hales served in every division from patrol to administration. He also has extensive teaching experience with more than 19 years of instruction for Beaufort County Community College's BLET program as well as the its Associate of Criminal Justice program for more than 10 years. Hales holds a general instructor certification along with several specialty instructor certifications.
Hales graduated from MT. Olive College in 2006 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal justice and completed the nationally accredited Administrative Officers Management program at NC State University. He also completed the FBI's Law Enforcement Executive Development Association training, earning its Trilogy Award and acceptance for membership. Hales is also a graduate of the Coastal Plains Training Center's "Management Development" program, which is a year-long academy of various courses in management and supervision. Hales also holds state certification in the Criminal Investigators' Certification Program.
Hales states, "I am excited about this opportunity to serve as MCC's BLET Coordinator. I am looking forward to building on the work of those who came before me, and to enhancing both the training and the reputation of the BLET program."Hales is a longtime resident of Beaufort County and is the proud father of three daughters.
Hales has scheduled the next BLET program to start on June 17. The BLET Curriculum is designed to prepare entry-level individuals with the cognitive and physical skills needed to become certified law enforcement officers in North Carolina. The course covers 640 hours of study within 36 total blocks of instruction including Physical Fitness, Firearms, Law Enforcement Driving Training, Laws of Arrest, Search and Seizure, Motor Vehicle Law, Techniques of Traffic Enforcement, Patrol Techniques, Sheriff's Responsibilities, Rapid Deployment, etc. All of these classes are conducted on the MCC campus with the exception of driver training and firearms.
Students who are accepted into this program will cover the most current law enforcement information available, take part in practical exercises and cover an extensive ethics section that is woven throughout the training experience. It takes approximately 16 weeks to complete and concludes with a comprehensive written exam and skills testing.
Upon successful completion of the BLET State Comprehensive Written Examination, the BLET trainee has one year from the date of the State Comprehensive Examination to be duly appointed and sworn as a law enforcement officer in North Carolina. However, most agencies include an additional period of field training.
In order to accommodate people who work during the day, this BLET course will be offered at night, Monday through Friday, and every other weekend during the day time. According to Hales, "These hours make the profession of law enforcement more accessible to those who are seeking a new and fulfilling career."
Those interested in applying for the BLET program at MCC must complete a packet of information and forms no later than June 14, 2019. The packets may be downloaded from the MCC website, or obtained in person or by mail from Lena Jackson or Cliff Hales. To obtain a packet or for more information about the BLET program at MCC, email Hales or call 252-789-0267.
Although the tuition for BLET is generally covered through a sponsoring law enforcement agency, there are costs for books and uniforms for this program. Thanks to a generous gift from the State Employees Credit Union (SECU), scholarships to cover these expenses may be available to qualified students. Hales can assist students in accessing the scholarship applications.