August 1, 2023
Chief Peter Ross Hedrick, Jason Scott Wingate, Braxton Manning, Jarrett Hoggard, Megan Johnson, LaFrance Davis, and Braedon Burbage were recognized on July 27, 2023, for successfully completing MCC's 645-hour (6 months) BLET (Basic Law Enforcement Training) program. They completed their training in early July. MCC's Division of Continuing Education currently offers its BLET program twice annually.
After 26 weeks of rigorous training, the cadets were eligible to take the State Comprehensive Examination on July 14. All seven of the cadets passed the exam and six were hired by law enforcement agencies before they finished the class.
This year's ceremony was kicked off with a posting of the colors by the Martin County Sheriff's Office Honor Guard, a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, and a recorded rendition of the National Anthem. MCC's Vice President, Dr. Bian Busch, gave the invocation and MCC's Executive Vice President of Continuing Education, Nathan Mizelle, welcomed everyone.
MCC's BLET Administrative Assistant, Lena Jackson, then introduced the guest speaker, Martin County Sheriff's Department Deputy Chief Drew Robinson. Robinson is a 27-year veteran of law enforcement. He encouraged the cadets to ask themselves three things before acting in haste or under pressure, "Is what I am about to do moral? Is it ethical? Is it legal? And if the answer is yes to all three, then you will do the right thing." Robinson also touted the value of compassion and learning form mistakes in law enforcement.
The cadets then received their certificates from Mizell, Jackson, and Davis. Special awards were then presented to three cadets who excelled in various aspects of the training. Braedon Burbage was awarded a plaque for his scores on the firing range. LaFrance Davis was recognized for improving the most in their physical fitness training. Jason Scott Wingate scored the highest on the physical fitness training as well as the academic training.
Class President, cadet Braxton Manning, followed up with remarks from the student perspective. Manning was elected to the position by his classmates. He thanked the instructors and staff for their hard work and then presented Director Davis with an impressive plaque from the entire class.
The NC BLET program covers 645 hours of study within 36 total blocks of instruction including, Physical Fitness, Firearms, Law Enforcement Driving Training, Laws of Arrest, Search and Seizure, Motor Vehicle Law, Techniques of Traffic Enforcement, Patrol Techniques, Sheriff's Responsibilities, and Rapid Deployment. The course contains the most current law enforcement information available and is filled with practical exercises and an extensive ethics section that is woven throughout the training experience. It takes approximately 16 weeks to complete and concludes with a comprehensive written exam and skills testing. This course of study is mandated by the state for all certified law enforcement officers.
The 42nd BLET class will be starting on August 28 and is one of the few BLET programs in Northeastern NC available at night. Those interested in applying for admission into the next class must complete and submit a packet of information and forms prior to the starting date. The packets may be obtained in person from Lena Jackson or online at www.martincc.edu/blet. To obtain a packet or more information about MCC's BLET program, contact Jackson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 252-789-0322. Information may also be obtained from Milton Davis at 252-789-0267 or via email at email@example.com.