Becoming a Colorado Police Officer

The Colorado Peace Officer Standards and Training Board (or POST) is in charge of setting the preconditions which must be met (both in applicants and training standards) for incoming police officers. For basic requirements, Colorado follows suit with many other states on what it requires from those wanting to apply. Some of these include being 21 years of age, obtaining a driver’s license, being a legal citizen, and having graduated high school or obtaining a GED. Beyond these, however, Colorado has even more expectations of their police officers, including some education beyond high school, and very rigid personality qualifications. Each region and police department may have additional requirements for applicants as well. It is important for individuals who are interesting in applying to check with the local agencies to determine what is expected of applicants and whether or not you would even qualify to be able to apply for a job. This is the best place to start when trying to determine the next steps to getting a job as police officer in Colorado.

Colorado State Police Officer Basic Standards

In addition to the requirements listed above, Colorado applicants must have valid CPR certification, must complete a training academy which has been approved by POST, must pass a background check, criminal investigation, and fingerprinting. Applicants must be able to pass the written, physical and psychological tests. Some areas have a minimum vision score, and even require a proper weight to height ratio. As stated before, it is important to contact a specific agency to find out if they have any additional requirements of their applicants.

The job outlook for those wanting to work as law enforcement officers in Colorado is good. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts the job growth in police work in Colorado is expected to grow over 13% over the next decade. This is higher than the national average projected growth for law enforcement jobs. Very good news for those looking to work as cops in Colorado. The following website: has a lot of good information and resources for individuals who are hoping to work as law enforcement officials in Colorado, including a spot where job openings are posted.

Salary Statistics for Police Officer Jobs in Colorado

If you are seeking employment as a Colorado police officer, you may be interested to know that the annual average salary is approximately 62,000. This average is higher than the US average, which is great news for those looking to find police work in Colorado. For Detectives and other higher ranking officers, the average salary is closer to 77,000 a year.

In addition to regular compensation, police officers are given competitive benefits as well. This would include items like a family medical insurance plan, dental coverage as well as vision and audio coverage. Also, officers are usually set up with some sort of life insurance plan, and a retirement plan or some sort of pension program. This are wonderful benefits which are awarded to officers for good reason: they have devoted themselves to serving and protecting the people.

As stated earlier, more and more Colorado police departments are looking to hire people who have some schooling, especially in areas such as criminal justice and law. Associate’s degrees or even bachelor’s degrees are offered in these subjects. This could give applicants an edge on other applicants, and can also influence starting pay rates as well. Typically those with a degree in a related field will start off at a higher pay rate than those without one.

Law Enforcement Programs in Colorado

Here are some of the police academies which are approved by POST:

  • Adams County Sheriff’s Academy – Brighton, CO
  • Aurora Police Training Academy – Aurora, CO
  • Colorado Springs PD Training Academy – Colorado Springs, CO
  • Colorado State Patrol Basic Training Academy – Golden, CO
  •  Denver Police Academy – Denver, CO

Here are some possible Criminal Justice Degree programs in Colorado:

  • Aims Community College

5401 West 20th Street, Greeley, CO 80634


  • Arapahoe Community College

5900 S. Santa Fe Drive, Littleton, CO 80160


  • Colorado Christian University

8787 West Alameda Ave, Lakewood, CO 80226


  • Colorado Mesa University

1100 North Avenue, Grand Junction, CO 81501


  • Colorado Mountain College

802 Grand Ave, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601


  • Colorado Northwestern Community College

500 Kennedy Drive, Rangely, CO 81648


  • Colorado Technical University

4435 N Chestnut St, Colorado Springs, CO 80907


  • Community College of Aurora

16000 E. CentreTech Pkwy, Aurora, CO 80011


  • Community College of Denver

1111 W. Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80204


  • Everest College– Aurora, Colorado Springs, Thornton

14280 East Jewell Ave, Aurora, CO 80012


1815 Jet Wing Drive, Colorado Springs, CO 80916


9065 Grant Street, Thornton, CO 80229


  • Front Range Community College

3645 West 112th Ave, Westminster, CO 80031


  • ITT Technical Institute

8620 Wolff Court, Suite 100, Thornton, CO 80031


  • Johnson & Wales University

7150 Montview Boulevard, Denver, CO 80220


  • Kaplan College

500 E 84th Ave, Denver, CO 80229


  • Metropolitan State University of Denver

1201 5th Street, Denver, CO 80204

(303) 556-5740

  • Otero Junior College

1802 Colorado Ave, La Junta, CO 81050


  • Pikes Peak Community College

5675 S. Academy Blvd, Colorado Springs, CO 80906


  • Pueblo Community College

900 West Orman Ave, Pueblo, CO 81004


  • Red Rocks Community College

13300 West Sixth Avenue, Lakewood, CO 80228


  • Regis University

3333 Regis Blvd, Denver, CO 80221


  • Trinidad State Junior College

600 Prospect Street, Trinidad, CO 81082


  • University of Colorado at Colorado Springs

1420 Austin Bluffs Pkwy, Colorado Springs, CO 80918


  • University of Colorado-Denver

1250 14th Street, Denver, CO 80202