Academy Info

In today’s law enforcement community, we find an ever-increasing trend toward true professionalism. This trend is mandated by our society’s concern for a reliable and effective system of criminal justice that uses alternatives to crude and simple physical force. Today’s society will not allow the law enforcement community to return to an era of limited education for police officers.

The officer must be democratically oriented and mindful of the dignity of every citizen. He/she must also be knowledgeable in the technical and legal aspects of this occupation. The Municipal Police Officers’ Training Academy (MPOTA) exists to provide the police officer with quality training, motivation and a positive philosophy of understanding about our society and its value systems. This academy is committed to continue this trend toward professionalism in its training programs so the officer can function in the community as an important member of the law enforcement team.


Applying to the Academy

The application process is two fold.  Every candidate must also apply to Mercyhurst University. Please click here to navigate to the Mercyhurst Online application.


Police Academy Prerequisites

Before being accepted into the Police Academy candidates must:

  • Attend an Information Session

  • Complete University Registration.

  • Provide a physical examination form completed by a doctor certifying that they meet the physical requirements mandated by the MPOETC.

  • Complete and pass a Pre-Entry Psychological and Reading Exam. Candidates must have a 9th grade minimum reading / comprehension level. 

  • Complete and pass a Pre-Entry Physical Abilities Assessment.

  • Provide a Criminal History and Driving History meeting the requirements required by MPOETC.

  • Pay tuition in full or make arrangements for financial aid with the University. 

  • Provide all necessary paperwork and complete all testing as described in the entry-level application before you can be accepted into the Academy.

NOTE: All applicants must complete and return the Physical Examination Form included with the application and pay the application fee before they will be permitted to take the pre-entry testing. Applicants will be notified at the information sessions of available testing dates.



A broad spectrum of information is presented to satisfy the educational needs of the basic patrol officer. The eighteen areas of study, as mandated by the Municipal Police Officer's Education and Training Commission, include: Introduction to the Academy; Introduction to Pennsylvania Law Enforcement; Physical and Emotional Readiness; Human Relations; Civil and Criminal Laws and Procedures; Use of Force/Defensive Tactic; Motor Vehicle Law; Motor Vehicle Collision Investigations; Patrol Procedures and Operations; Basic Firearms; Principles of Criminal Investigation; Emergency First Responser and CPR; Operation of Patrol Vehicles; Case Presentation; Crisis Management; Families in Crisis; Report Writing; Handling Arrested Persons.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate basic skills and knowledge of the criminal justice system
  • Demonstrate exemplary written and communication interpersonal skills
  • Evaluate and apply basic knowledge of legal aspects of police operations
  • Demonstrate exemplary problem solving skills
  • Understand and demonstrate good investigative technique
  • Understand the differences and work effectively with diverse populations
  • Exhibit good situational awareness and judgement
  • Demonstrate the ability to correctly articulate high stress events
  • Demonstrate physical fitness, stamina, and fine motor skills related to the profession

 Graduation & PA Certification

To graduate you will be required to:

  • Successfully complete numerous exams, covering 4 modules of training, with a minimum score of 80%.

To be certified as a police officer in Pennsylvania:

  • You will be required to pass a certification exam administered by MPOETC officials after being hired as a police officer to be certified for employment as a police officer in Pennsylvania.

The following links will help interested persons with any questions regarding Act 120 Certification and requirements for certification:

Criminal History Check can be obtained online by going to the Patch application link

College Credits upon Completion

Upon successful successful completion of the Mercyhurst University Municipal Police Training Academy program, the cadet is eligible to receive up to a maximum of twenty-two (22) Criminal Justice credits. Those credits include the following courses: 

  • MUNP101; Introduction to the Police Academy (1 credit);

  • MUNP104; Physical and Emotional Readiness (1 credit);

  • MUNP107; Laws and Procedures (4 credits);

  • MUNP110: Patrol Procedures and Operations (3 credits);

  • MUNP115; Criminal Investigations (3 credits);

  • MUNP120; Topics in Criminal Justice (3 credits);

  • MUNP125; Mechanics of Arrest (1 credit);

  • MUNP130; Vehicle Operations and Procedures (1 credit)

  • MUNP135; First Aid and CPR (1 credit);

  • MUNP140; Tactical Self Defense (4 credits),

View Act 120 Degree Requirements


Application forms

Application Process

Act 120 Application

Physical Examination

Vision Examination

Psychological Examination

Medical Release

Authorization to Release Information

Financial Aid Checklist

Combined Fitness Charts

Cost Sheet


Background Checks

Pennsylvania Driving History

Pennsylvania Criminal History

FBI Criminal History