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Cool Schools: students form partnership with police

8:03 AM, Nov 14, 2013   |    comments
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LOUDOUN COUNTY, Va. (WUSA9) -- A police presence at Monroe Technical Center in Loudoun County, Virginia is a regular thing. The difference is the students here look forward to it. They have a pretty impressive partnership with the men in blue.

When Sheriff Mike Chapman got these humvees from the Department of Defense, they needed some work. "There's a hole in that hood. You have to get fiberglass and lay it on there and sand it down and then paint it," said Chase Hindman. 

Students are getting job experience with a real customer and the sheriff's department gets the work done at a great price: free. 

"When these vehicles came to us they were camouflage all over. They had to completely sand the vehicle down," shared David Williams, collision repair instructor.

Sheriff Chapman told us, "They painted the vehicles and decaled the vehicles. Now we can use these for inclement weather."

The partnership goes far beyond the garage, though. Dominique Perez and her classmates were an integral part of the plan to encourage teenagers to stop texting behind the wheel. Now her layout work and marketing skill can be seen in every school in the county thanks to her poster. The partnership with the sheriff's department also laid the foundation for her future. 

"I mainly discovered when I came here when last year when we started playing around with things and see how this was actually like a job, I decided I want to keep doing this," shared Dominique Perez.

The quality work makes the sheriff's department want to keep doing it, too. It turns out police presence is a good thing at Monroe Tech.

"They get to actually talk to the deputies and learn hey, these are real guys out in the community and it builds that relationship and it's a good relationship."

The students also have an opportunity to take a nine-week criminal justice course through the sheriff's department. Brad teaches it and helped set up this story.

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