La Feria News

Passport to Law Enforcement

CRIMINAL-JUSTICE-2013_SANS-

Luis Cisneros Trains Future Police Officers

Luis Cisneros teaches a popular class in criminal justice and the principles of law enforcement to motivated students at Santa Maria High School. Most of his students go into police work or related fields on graduation. Since 2004, his students have distinguished themselves by bringing home hundreds of trophies and state titles in statewide competitions. “There is no secret, it is the result of hard work by the students,” Cisneros told La Feria News.

“Television shows like CSI and Castle tend to exaggerate and glorify police work. People get the wrong idea,” he said. “I tell my students that they really must want to be in police work–it is tedious, demanding work. They will have to be proficient in math, biology, chemistry and other sciences to enter the field–not very glamorous.”

“Not all of my students will apply for police officer positions after graduation,” he said.

“Some have gone into Security officer positions, some into the field of Criminology, others will be lawyers. A couple have gone into Criminal Crime Scene Investigator (CSI).” He added, “Some simply wanted to know about law enforcement for general knowledge.“
In his classes, he instructs students in Law I and Law II for police candidates. Since September 11, there has been a greater demand for trained, qualified security officers in the private security field. He teaches to that need up to Level III. His graduates then need to sign up for advanced training to be qualified to carry and use firearms. The student also needs to be 21 years old to carry a weapon.
Cisneros’ students have brought home 109 trophies in State and Regional Competitions sponsored by the Texas Public Service Association (TPSA). His students have been state champs several times. They have consistently claimed 1st, 2nd,or 3rd place in categories such as: Accidental Investigation, Arrest and Search, Bomb Search, Male and Female Obstacle Course, Felony High Risk Traffic Stop, SWAT Extraction, and First Responder. Their trophies are on display at the Santa Maria High School. He showed us the seven new trophies they just added from statewide competitions. “Remember, we are a 1A school competing against 5A schools across the state—that’s 400 students from 25 schools, and we won the “Overall Best High School Law Enforcement Program Award.” “These are tremendous achievements for our Santa Maria high school students,” Cisneros said. adding, “and, believe me, everyone is proud of them.”.

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Instructor Luis Cisneros with his Criminal Justice students

Instructor Cisneros has a special interest in teaching law enforcement to high school students. He himself has been in police work in the Valley since 1997. He graduated from the University of Texas Brownsville Police Academy. His police career includes service as a Cameron County Deputy Constable, Youth Intervention Officer with the Cameron County Sheriff’s Department. He has also worked with a Boy Scouts of America program.

“I found I enjoy working with young people, so I got my Teacher’s Certificate in 2003 and began teaching Criminal Justice at Santa Rosa High School,” Cisneros said.

“What I like about my classes is to see the sense of pride and self-esteem that the students display,” he said. “When they put on the uniform, you see the change–their confidence skyrockets. In our dress uniforms, we perform at civic public functions where we provide a color guard and act as ushers–the kids love it.”

Luis G. Cisneros is a Criminal Justice teacher who puts pride and confidence in his students and prepares them for life beyond his classes.

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