WCC Police Academy celebrates special 31-member graduating class

March 23, 2024 Rich Rezler

New Washtenaw County Sheriff Deputies
New Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office deputies Offer Preuthun and Jonathan Earley pose with some of their new co-workers after the WCC Police Academy graduation (Photo by JD Scott)


Much like the new police officers it trains, the Washtenaw Community College Public Service Training department stepped up when its community needed it most.

The Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) had a significant need for additional academy training, so WCC answered that call for assistance and built an additional 18-week training program.

So while the WCC Police Academy typically holds its graduation ceremony in September, a special celebration was held Friday at 2|42 Community Church in Ann Arbor to honor 31 graduates who will be joining law enforcement departments around the state.

Class president Tyler Mutter spoke on behalf of the graduates, stating he is confident this group of recruits will make a significant difference in their communities.

“To most people, the career they choose is just a means to an end, a way to provide for themselves and their family,” Mutter said. “To these recruits, a career in law enforcement is a calling. They have decided to make sacrifices and dedicate themselves to something larger than themselves.”

WCC Public Service Training Senior Director Joyce VanMeter explained to those in attendance that each recruit completed more than 816 hours of curriculum and earned 19 Washtenaw Community College credits over the 18-week academy.

The academy consists of:

  • 86 hours of firearms classroom and range instruction
  • 80 hours of legal instruction
  • 67 hours of subject control instruction
  • 62 hours of physical fitness training
  • 40 hours of emergency vehicle operation training
  • 24 hours of first aid training
  • 8 hours of health and wellness
  • Many additional hours of cultural diversity, unbiased policing, law enforcement active de-escalation strategies, interpersonal communications, and more.

“What started on November 2, 2023, with a chaos room filled with piles of equipment and a group of 33 individuals has culminated in the graduation of 31 team members,” VanMeter said. “Law enforcement isn’t a profession people enter into lightly,  It is a deep and relentless commitment, one that brings much sacrifice to personal lives and families.”

Kevin Kayzak, Chief of Police for the Chelsea Police Department, served as keynote speaker. He was introduced by his newest officer, WCC Police Academy graduate Lauren Schneider.

Following tradition, all of the current and retired law enforcement officers in attendance at the graduation ceremony were invited to form a welcoming line that each graduate walked through after receiving their completion certificate. They were welcomed into the law enforcement profession with handshakes, hugs and slaps on the back.

Later, each graduate participated in a badge pinning ceremony. Some received the badge of their new department from their new fellow officers; others from their mothers, fathers, spouses, children, aunts, uncles, friends and siblings.



The 31-member graduating class will serve communities across the state — from as far away as the Houghton County Sheriff’s Office in the Upper Peninsula to local departments in Ypsilanti, Chelsea and the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Department.

Berrien County Sheriff’s Office: Patrick Daugherty, Wesley Marcellus
Blackman-Leonio Departent of Public Safety: Tyler Mutter
Chelsea Police Department: Lauren Schneider
Eaton Rapids Police Departent: Caleb Green
Farmington Department of Public Safety: Brandon Campbell
Hillsdale County Sheriff’s Office: Colton Bassage
Houghton County Sheriff’s Office: Brian McColll
Jackson Police Department: Noah Frazier
Lincoln Park Police Department: Tyler Badia, Jeffrey Gratopp, Heriberto Jauregui Jr., Buddy Tibbs
Meridian Township Police Department: Jacob Scarvey, Kevin Schultz
Monroe County Sheriff’s Department: Jordyn Panza, Brian Robar, Trevor Tomkinson
Novi Police Department: Julia Barrett
Oak Park Department of Public Safety: Jacob Haugh, Nathan Mullins, Shane Walker
Redford Township Police Department: Dylan Neal
Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office: Offer Preuthun, Jonathan Earley
Wyandotte Police Department: John Barry, Kyle Cox, Jonathan Rasmussen, Brandon Russo, Spenscer Saltsman
Ypsilanti Police Department: Darnell Tyson



Police Academy instructors handed out the following awards to members of the graduating class:

MCOLES Outstanding Recruit Award: Kevin Schultz
‘Train Like Troy’ Award: Brian McColl
High Academic Average Award: Kevin Schultz
Physical Fitness Excellence Award: Jacob Scarvey
Physical Fitness Greatest Impovement Award: Tyler Badia
Emergency Vehicle Operation Award: Patrick Daugherty
Firearms Excellence Award: Patrick Daugherty
Firearms Instructor Award: Spenscer Saltsman & Darnell Tyson
Subject Control Excellence Award: Brian McColl

McColl also received the honor of being selected by his class to read the Law Enforcement Code of Ethics at the end of the graduation ceremony.

The graduating class also voted on instructor awards. Winners include:

Most Influential Instructor: Cpt. Jacob Pifer
Most Dedicated Instructor: Lt. Alan Hunt
Favorite Instructor: Sgt. Michael Church

Tags: Class of 2024, Graduation, Police Academy, Public Service Training

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