Citizen's Academy


The San Francisco State University Citizen’s Academy is a program designed to educate members of the campus community about law enforcement on our campus through various methods of instruction including lectures, activities, discussions and scenario training. In addition to learning about law enforcement and community service, students will have the opportunity to explore new career opportunities and develop relationships that will last well beyond the course.


  • To promote the San Francisco State University Police Department as an agency that is dedicated to the students, staff and faculty of our campus, and to the community we live in.
  • To educate the public about the necessity of a positive community/police relationship.
  • To provide members of the public the opportunity to learn from officers who have knowledge in a variety of areas of law enforcement.
  • To provide transparency and build trusting relationships with the members of our community.
  • To have fun!

The Citizen’s Academy is not designed to be a substitute for accredited law enforcement training and does not make a participant a certified law enforcement officer nor is it designed to train citizens to perform any law enforcement duties. Further, the Citizen’s Academy does not provide legal advice or teach people how to circumvent the law. 

Participant Requirements:

  1. Participation in all activities and discussion.
  2. Participants are allowed one absence each.
  3. The 1st and last sessions are mandatory.***(Unless a pre-approved absence has been authorized)***
  4. Participants must adhere to the SF State campus rules, Student Code of Conduct and parking regulation/fees.
  5. Must be at least 18 years or older.

Application Information:

Classes are typically held virtually every Wednesday during the 9-week Academy for 2 hours for the duration of the program each semester. SF State students, faculty or staff members will be given priority admittance to the program and all applicants are subject to a minimal background check prior to being accepted.

Applications must be submitted by the designated deadline at 5:00pm.

  • Submit a completed application.
    ***Submitting an application DOES NOT guarantee acceptance into the program***
  • Review of Application by the department.
  • Selected applicants will receive program overview and packet; non-selected applicants will receive email notification.
  • Review your participant program overview and release of liability waiver.
  • Signed waivers are due before 1st day of class to participate.

Please fill out an application if you are interested:

Citizen's Academy FAQs

No. You do not have to be affiliated with the university to participate in the program.

The in-person sessions are 10 weeks long and the virtual sessions are 8 weeks long.

The sessions typically meet on Wednesdays for 2-3 hours.

Some of the topics taught are Introduction to UPD, basic investigations and Community Policing.

POST certified police officers and guest instructors from other police agencies instruct in the classes.

Depending on the department’s staffing levels and instructor availability, the citizen’s academy program is typically offered once every semester.

Turning in an application doesn’t guarantee acceptance. Applicants must undergo a minimal background process before being offered a spot in the program.

Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to view PDF files. This is a free program available from the Adobe web site. Follow the download directions on the Adobe web site to get your copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader.