Citizens Police Academy


Citizen's Police Academies have been around for several years across the nation. The purpose was to give the general public a better idea of how officers do their job, why they do their job the way they do and what the end results are for doing that job. Most of the general public's knowledge of police work has come from watching a host of police television shows and movies. However, most crimes are not solved in a 30 to 60 minute timeframe. Chief Ross McCarty wanted to make the Citizen's Police Academy a priority of his police-community relations programs. The Urbandale Police Department held its first Citizen's Police Academy in January 2010. There were seven graduates who attended weekly meetings and training for 9 full weeks.

2024 Citizen's Police Academy

This year's Citizen Police Academy has been scheduled to start on February 8th, 2024 and will be held on Thursday evenings from 6:00P.M.-9:00P.M. through April 18th, 2024 to include two Saturday morning classes on March 30th and April 6th. 

Applications & Contact

If you would like to be considered for Citizens Police Academy please fill out the online Citizens Police Academy Application. For more information on the Citizens Police Academy contact Community Relations Officer Meagan Cowden at 515-331-6804 or by email.

Application Deadline for the 2023 Citizen's Police Academy:

January 22th, 2024 by 8:00A.M.


The Citizen's Police Academy is open to individuals who have reached the age of 21 and who are either a resident of the city of Urbandale or have business connections within the city of Urbandale.
Cost: Attending Citizen's Academy is free.
Time Commitment: There is a time commitment to participate in the academy. Classes are generally 3 hours long and are held once a week in the evening. There are 11 classes held over 9 weeks.

Covered Topics

Topics include a wide array of experiences across the different divisions within the Police Department.

Patrol Operations

  • Accident Investigation
  • Bike Patrol
  • Calls for Service (Response)
  • Defensive Tactics
  • K9 Operations
  • Legal Instruction
  • Patrol Tactics
  • Reserve Police Officer Unit
  • S.E.R.T (Suburban Emergency Response Team)
  • Tobacco and Alcohol Compliance
  • Traffic Enforcement and Control
  • Trial Preparation

Criminal Investigation Division

  • Crime Scene Management
  • Cyber Crimes
  • Financial Crimes
  • Homicide Investigation
  • Juvenile Crimes
  • Property Crimes
  • Person Crimes
  • Narcotics / Vice

Support Services

  • Community Relations
  • Culture of Integrity
  • Holding Facility Management
  • Honor Guard
  • Police Chaplain Program
  • Press Information Officer (PIO)
  • School Resource Officer (SRO)
  • Abandoned Vehicles
  • Application Process
  • City Auction
  • Critical Incidents
  • Event Planning
  • Office of Professional Standards (Internal Affairs)
  • Records and Case Management
  • Training

Continued Partnership

Citizen Police Academy Alumni assist the Police Department in a variety of event and volunteer opportunities including National Night Out events, Trunk or Treat, Shop With A Cop, etc.  Alumni meet once a month among themselves to stay up to date with upcoming events and opportunities.

  1. Police Department

    Physical Address
    3740 86th Street
    Urbandale, IA 50322

    NOTE: This email is not monitored 24/7.  To report an issue or speak with an officer, call 515-222-3321.

    For Emergencies Dial:

    24-hr Non-Emergency Dispatch:

    Administration and Records 
    Monday - Friday 8am - 5pm: