How to Join Our Team



Speak with a recruiter, complete a job interest card, schedule a ride-along, and learn more about KDPS.

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Complete an initial online application to ensure your eligibility to become a Public Safety Officer.

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Complete required MCOLES Reading & Writing and Pre-Enrollment Fitness Testing at an approved location.

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Initial Interview

Complete an initial interview with KDPS personnel.

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Background Check

Complete a background packet and be assigned a background investigator who will conduct a thorough background examination.

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Chiefs' Interview

Complete a final interview with the Chiefs of KDPS.

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Conditional Offer

Receive a conditional offer of employment.

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Medical, Psychological, and Drug Screening

Complete required medical and drug screenings, and psychological testing.

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Receive paid training in police, fire, and EMS disciplines.

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A phot of firefighters extinguishing a fire during a training exercise

Get Paid While You Train

KDPS not only pays for all of your police, fire, and EMS training but you'll also be paid an hourly wage while you train. KDPS is looking for officers who are ready to serve the citizens of Kalamazoo and will invest in your success starting on day one.

Photo of officers posing with bikes during the Police Unity Ride.

Maintain a Healthy Work-Life Balance

Our unique schedule encourages a healthy balance between life and career with ample time off. Public Safety Officers assigned to the patrol division are scheduled to work 14 days out of a 28-day work rotation. PSOs have 7 days off in a row every work cycle.

Photo of a KDPS Officer sitting in a public safety vehicle.

Competitive Pay, a Pension, and Great Benefits

Public Safety Officer salaries start above $50,000 and can increase in the first year to more than $66,000 once cross-trained and off probation, with paid time off, bonuses, and other benefits. KDPS also offers a defined benefit pension plan for eligible employees at 25 years of service.

Photo of a detective checking a gun for fingerprints.

Follow Your Interests

Public Safety Officers have the opportunity to pursue specialty assignments or units that align with their interests, like joining the Community Policing Unit, Bomb Squad, or Aviation Unit. Officers can also advance into supervisory or command roles as their careers advance.

Choose Your Career Path

Photo of a KDPS Detective in a conference room.

Detective Unit

Detectives are tasked with investigating and solving major crimes within the community. With advanced training and technology, Detectives follow leads, conduct thorough investigations, analyze evidence, prepare detailed reports, and aid in the prosecution of criminal offenders to bring justice and closure to victims of crime and their families.

Three Public Safety Officers pose with police canines

K9 Unit

With eight K9 teams, KDPS boasts one of the largest canine units in the State. K9 Handlers are responsible for the care, training, and deployment of their assigned K9, both on-duty and off-duty. K9 Handlers work closely with their K9 partners on daily tasks including patrolling, apprehension, search and rescue, narcotics detection, and community relations.

A photo of two Public Safety Officers riding motorcycles

Motor Unit

The Motor Unit operates motorcycles as part of their duties; conducting patrols, traffic enforcement, and community outreach. The unit provides a versatile and agile presence in various environments by enhancing traffic safety, conducting escorts, and supporting public safety initiatives. The Motor Unit utilizes three Harley Davidson Electra Glide motorcycles made specifically for police use.

A lab technician drops a liquid onto a microscope slide

Lab Specialist and Technician

Lab Specialists and Technicians are KDPS’ forensic experts. Specialists and Technicians are highly trained in multiple fields, including fingerprint analysis, firearm and ballistic examination, drug analysis, shooting scene reconstruction, blood splatter analysis, and crash reconstruction. Officers work in a multi-jurisdictional Forensic Crime Lab and spend their days in the lab and in the field.

Photo of an officer in the Aviation Unit flying a public safety drone

Aviation Unit

Members of the Aviation Unit provide crucial support to KDPS officers from the air, utilizing specialized skills and equipment to aid in missions that require the assistance of unmanned aerial systems (UAS). This can include providing overwatch for canine tracks and critical incidents, guiding incident management decisions with real-time intelligence, and supporting community initiatives.

Photo of officers in the Bomb Squad helping each other into a protective suit.

Bomb Squad

As one of only eight FBI-accredited bomb squads in Michigan, the KDPS Bomb Squad responds to and mitigates potential explosive threats, suspicious packages, and hazardous devices. With the primary objective of safeguard public safety by neutralizing threats posed by explosive devices, the team uses advanced technology and training to identify, assess, and safely dispose of explosives.

Photo of a member of the KDPS Honor Guard presentign a folded flag.

Honor Guard

Honor Guard members serve as the ceremonial representatives for KDPS, participating in events that honor fallen officers, official ceremonies, retirements, parades, and other formal occasions. As the dignified and solemn image of the department to both the community and fellow first responders, Honor Guard members must portray the highest level of professionalism, discipline, and respect.

A group photo of the KDPS Pipe and Drum Team

Pipe and Drum Team

As a specialized unit within the Honor Guard, the Pipe and Drum Team is a musical ensemble consisting of drums and bagpipes, tasked with representing KDPS at ceremonial events, public performances, and on special occasions. Their poise and professionalism fosters positive community relationships through musical outreach.

Photo of the KDPS Technical Rescue Team climbing a tower.

Technical Rescue Team

The 5th District Technical Rescue Team is multi-jurisdictional, serving nine counties in southwest Michigan. Specializing in high-angle, confined space, structural collapse, and trench rescues, this highly specialized team maintains the utmost standards in emergency preparedness. Members use their advanced training and skills to perform complex rescue operations to save lives.

Photo of an officer and a child using a fire hose.

Community Policing Unit

The Community Policing Unit serves as liaisons between KDPS and the community, fostering positive relationships and addressing neighborhood concerns. Focusing on the pillars of collaboration, education, and outreach, the team uses non-traditional policing methods to educate the community, prevent crime, reduce gun violence, and improve the quality of life for those within the community.

Photo of a Public Safety Officer extinguishing a vehicle fire.

Equipment Operator Technician

Serving as both an Equipment Operator and Technical Rescue Team member, an Equipment Operator Technician combines both skill sets to safeguard lives, protect property, and mitigate risks during emergencies.