In the fall of 2001, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Los Angeles office offered the first FBI Citizens Academy program. Select community leaders and advocates participated in this innovative outreach initiative, where they were educated about the mission, objectives and services of the FBI Agency. Through this community partnership, FBI Los Angeles endeavored to foster a working and collaborative relationship between its field office and the communities they serve. Over the course of 10 weeks, close relationships were formed, common civic aspirations were discovered, and a desire to establish a community based foundation was born.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation recognizes the importance of forging strong alliances with local communities and maintaining collaborative relationships with community leaders. To accomplish this directive, the FBI developed and implemented the FBI Citizens Academy program. Delivered throughout the country, the FBI Citizens Academy program is an 10 week intensive, interactive class specifically designed to educate civilians about the inner working, roles and responsibilities of the FBI Agency, and interface how local communities and citizens play a key role in the Agency’s successful operation.
Delivered in an an intimate classroom setting, select students cover a curriculum that includes counter terrorism, white collar crimes, organized crime, cyber crimes, civil rights and other FBI priorities. All classes are taught by the Special Agent in Charge (SAC), Assistant Special Agents in Charge (ASAC’s), Supervisory Special Agents (SSA’s), and Field Special Agents (SA’s). Participants also partake in a live fire day at the range where they learn about firearms and weapons safety.
- Potential Academy attendees must be a business, civic, religious community leader nominated by a Bureau Employee or Citizens Academy graduate and approved by the Special Agent in Charge (SAC) in Los Angeles
- Must be 21 years of age
- No prior felony convictions
- Must live/work in the jurisdiction of the Los Angeles field Office
- Must consent to and pass a background, and security clearance
- Must sign a non-disclosure form