Ellie Berends among 57th New Jersey State Police Training Class graduates

TRENTON, NJ — Celebrating his commitment to maintaining the New Jersey State Police as one of the nation’s premier law enforcement agencies, Governor Chris Christie on June 23 commended New Jersey’s 148 newest state troopers during graduation ceremonies at the National Guard Training Center in Sea Girt. The 157th New Jersey State Police Class is the seventh new class trained since 2010.

[emember_protected] “These men and women will join the finest law enforcement agency in the country – the New Jersey State Police — and continue the proud tradition that exemplifies leadership and service in protecting and safeguarding the residents of our state on the roads, in their communities, and in their homes,” said Governor Christie. “Having completed their rigorous training, they are now prepared to join the more than 2,600-trooper force that serves our state, conducting not only general policing duties and highway and traffic enforcement, but playing major roles in preparing for, responding to, and recovering from major emergencies and disasters and performing counter-terrorism duties.”

The 157th New Jersey State Police Class graduated 145 men and three women troopers, and one of the three women was Ellie Berends, daughter of Dale and JoAnn Berends of Glenwood City. Of this graduating class, more than 77 percent have a Bachelor’s Degree or higher, 47 percent played college sports, and 18 percent have prior law enforcement experience. Also, among the class are 13 firefighters, 10 former military, nine Emergency Medical Technicians, eight personal trainers, seven teachers and six Eagle Scouts.

The class completed 24 weeks of strenuous physical and academic training consisting of classroom lessons and practical training scenarios. The recruits participated in extensive training and role-playing exercises focused on motor vehicle stops, domestic violence situations, and cultural diversity. In the area of cultural diversity, the trooper recruits received detailed instruction from community and cultural organizations.

The New Jersey State Police Training Academy is one of the few residential academies in the nation. Recruits report to the academy before dawn on Monday morning, and they do not return home until dismissal on Friday evening. Therefore recruits are away from their families during significant life events. During this academy class, five recruits got engaged, one recruit got married, and four children were born.

The probationary troopers have been assigned to stations throughout the state, and over the next few months, the new troopers will begin their careers under the watchful eye of their Trooper-Coaches and supervisors.

“I commend the graduates of the 157th New Jersey State Police Class on joining an elite police force that is second to none across the nation,” said Attorney General Christopher Porrino. “It takes special courage and dedication to earn your badge as a state trooper. I wish you all long, safe and rewarding careers in this honorable profession.”

“Today, we welcome 148 men and women into the State Police family after completing one of the most intensive and difficult law enforcement training academies in the country,” said Colonel Rick Fuentes, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “The investigative techniques and tactics that the troopers of the 157th Class learned over the last six months will remain with them throughout their careers and beyond, as will the bond between classmates.” [/emember_protected]