Cadet Program

STARTING SALARY - $16.47 per hour (Minimum of 24 hours per week, up to 40 hours per week)


  • Must be between the ages of 17 years 9 months and 19 years of age at the time of application. Applicants may not be appointed until they are 18 years of age and must be appointed before their 20th birthday.
  • United States citizenship
  • Be in final year of High School or possess a High School Diploma or acceptable equivalent AND registered/enrolled or attending college (preferably criminal justice or related) maintaining a 2.5 gpa.
  • Valid Driver's License
  • Pass physical agility test and written police examination

    Physical Agility Test Videos:

  • Appear before an Interview Board
  • Pass polygraph examination and drug screening
  • Pass psychological and physical examinations
  • Pass visual acuity standard
  • Pass extensive background investigation
  • Must successfully pass an additional physical, polygraph, and psychological examinations prior to transfer to Deputy Recruit or Correctional Officer.

Corrections Badge Photo

Corrections Badge Photo


Sheriff's Cadets are college students, working part-time for the St. Mary's County Sheriff's Office. They perform duties relative to police and corrections work but not requiring police or correctional officer authority. Sheriff's Cadets experience on-the-job training to learn to enforce laws related to the protection of life and property, traffic control, crime prevention, and station clerk duties. Sheriff's Cadets may also work in the St. Mary's County Detention Center providing assistance in areas that do not involve direct contact with the incarcerated individuals of the Detention Center. Sheriff's Cadets receive close direction from supervisors and carry out their assignments in accordance with established operating procedures. During this period of employment, Sheriff's Cadets are periodically evaluated for efficiency, general performance of duties, and continued eligibility for appointment as a Police Recruit or Correctional Officer.

Successful Sheriff's Cadets may be appointed as Police Recruits or Correctional Officers to the first academy class for which they become eligible, provided they serve a minimum of one year of service in the Cadet program, satisfactorily pass the required psychological, physical, and polygraph examinations. Work is evaluated through observations, conferences, and reports.

  • Specific duties and responsibilities may vary, depending on the assigned location. Duties and responsibilities may be added, deleted or changed at any time at the direction of management, formally or informally, verbally or in writing.
  • Assist members of the Agency in accomplishing work objectives, as assigned.
  • Respond to emergency calls (domestic and civil complaints) requiring police action with a sworn police officer to include, but not limited to, intrusion alarms, child abuse, robberies, traffic accidents, etc.
  • Learn and practice civil procedures and custodial responsibilities.
  • Observe writing of citations for traffic and other minor violations.
  • Assist in writing detailed incident, investigation, activity, and other reports.
  • Learn to interpret and apply laws contained in various state codes and local ordinances.
  • Learn and practice basic criminal and traffic accident investigation procedures.
  • Learn and practice techniques, including crime scene preservation, witness interviewing, and evidence collection.
  • Provide assistance to accident and other victims.
  • Provide assistance to correctional officers in the Detention Center in areas such as central control and administration, and perform other various duties not requiring direct contact with the incarcerated individuals.
  • Perform the duties of the position of Station Clerk, as assigned.
  • Assist the Traffic Safety Unit with various duties such as commercial vehicle inspections, school bus safety inspections, child safety seat inspections, and participate in crime prevention and traffic operations public education programs.
  • Staff Agency informational displays or booths.
  • Assist with crowd and traffic control at public events and at crime scenes, fires, traffic light outages, and other unusual occurrences, as assigned.
  • Perform administrative duties throughout the Agency, as assigned.
  • Attend and participate in training sessions and other meetings, as required.
  • Perform any other related duties, as assigned.


  • Ability to gain knowledge of the principles and practices, rules and regulations found in Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and other manuals pertinent to the assigned job classification.
  • Possess strong community relations skills to deal with a wide range of people, including children, the elderly, non-English speaking ethnic persons, and persons with medical conditions which may render them mentally unclear.
  • Ability to learn names and locations of roads, buildings, and other landmarks in St. Mary's County.
  • Ability to provide quality police service to the citizens of St. Mary's County.
  • Ability to understand oral and written instructions, to speak effectively and articulately, to demonstrate good listening skills, and to convey concern, understanding, and empathy.
  • Apply knowledge, experience, and reason to arrive at effective decisions for routine situations.
  • Ability to utilize a high level of discretion, good judgment, and confidentiality.
  • Ability to complete work assignments and reports in a timely manner.
  • Ability to organize and determine priorities of diverse assignments.
  • Ability to read and comprehend various documents.
  • Ability to maintain composure and work effectively in situations of on the job pressure.
  • Ability to learn and apply training provided by the Agency or designated agency.
  • Ability to comprehend, understand and adhere to, at all times, Agency policies, procedures, rules, and regulations.
  • Ability to become CPR and First Aid Certified.
  • Possess a valid driver's license.
  • Operate assigned Agency vehicle in accordance with established rules and regulations of this Agency and the laws of the State of Maryland.
  • Ability to pass a comprehensive background investigation.
  • Ability to pass random drug screening.


Sheriff's Cadets may be in their final year of high school to begin the application process or hold a diploma from a recognized high school or possess a General Educational Development (GED) certificate recognized by the Maryland State Board of Education.

Sheriff's Cadets are required to attend college full or part-time and take courses in criminal justice or a related and approved field. Sheriff's Cadets must maintain a grade point average of 2.5 or higher.


  • The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
  • Communicate effectively and coherently with other Agency personnel and the public, either in person or by telephone, by written report or memorandum, through radio communications, or computer network.
  • Stand exposed to weather elements and temperature extremes for long periods at crime scenes, traffic accidents, emergency and disaster scenes, or other events. Exposure to temperatures ranging from below freezing to above 100 degrees.
  • Adhere to Universal Barrier Precautions when exposed to blood and body fluids.
  • Stand exposed to life-threatening situations in high-speed pursuit driving or assault.
  • Enter and exit motor vehicles frequently and quickly.
  • Some work is performed in an office setting with frequent interruptions. May sit for extended periods of time, answering the telephone, and operating computer equipment.
  • Enter and retrieve data from a variety of computer systems when assigned in the Duty Office.
  • Read computer screens and be able to distinguish colors.
  • Exhibit and maintain professional decorum at all times.
  • Function in a structured organization with strict rules of conduct.
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with coworkers and supervisors.
  • Appropriately accept supervision, criticism, and evaluation.
  • Exhibit sensitivity to people from varying ethnic, religious, sexual, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
  • Deal tactfully, effectively, and equitably with people, both within and outside the Agency.
  • Manipulate keys and keyboards, file drawer latches, and file folders (locating, removing, inserting).
  • Must perform work in accordance with sound safety practices.
  • Must report for duty in a regular and punctual manner.
  • Must work on-call, overtime, and temporary assignments when deemed necessary by the Agency.
  • May be required to work varying hours on a rotating schedule including days, evenings, midnights, weekends, and holidays.
  • Comply with Agency policies and procedures as outlined in the Administrative and Operational Manual

For questions, please contact the Personnel and Recruiting Section at