How to Become a State Trooper in NC

How to Become a State Trooper in NC

Becoming a state trooper in North Carolina is a noble and rewarding career choice. State troopers are responsible for ensuring public safety, enforcing traffic laws, and responding to emergencies. However, the path to becoming a state trooper requires dedication, training, and meeting specific requirements. In this article, we will outline the steps you need to take to become a state trooper in NC and answer some frequently asked questions about this career path.

Step 1: Meet the Basic Requirements
To become a state trooper in NC, you must meet certain basic requirements. These requirements include being at least 21 years old, having a high school diploma or GED, and possessing a valid driver’s license. Additionally, you must be a U.S. citizen and have no felony convictions.

Step 2: Complete the Application Process
Once you meet the basic requirements, you can begin the application process. This process typically involves submitting an online application, which includes providing personal information, employment history, and educational background. You will also need to pass a background check, undergo a thorough medical examination, and take a polygraph test.

Step 3: Physical Fitness Assessment
As a state trooper, physical fitness is crucial. You will be required to pass a physical fitness assessment, which includes tests such as push-ups, sit-ups, a 1.5-mile run, and a vertical jump. Preparing for this assessment in advance is essential, as it will determine your eligibility to proceed to the next stage of the hiring process.

Step 4: Written Examination
Once you pass the physical fitness assessment, you will be required to take a written examination. This examination evaluates your knowledge in areas such as reading comprehension, mathematics, and problem-solving. Preparing for the written examination by studying relevant materials and practicing sample questions is highly recommended.

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Step 5: Interview and Background Investigation
If you successfully pass the written examination, you will be invited for an interview. This interview will assess your communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and overall suitability for the role of a state trooper. Following the interview, an extensive background investigation will be conducted to verify your personal, educational, and employment history.

Step 6: Complete the Training Academy
Successful candidates will be admitted to the North Carolina State Highway Patrol Training Academy. The academy provides comprehensive training to equip recruits with the necessary skills and knowledge required to become state troopers. This training includes classroom instruction, physical fitness training, firearms training, emergency vehicle operations, and defensive tactics.

Step 7: Field Training
After completing the training academy, you will undergo a field training program. This program involves working alongside experienced state troopers to gain practical experience and further develop your skills. Field training typically lasts several months and covers various aspects of law enforcement and public safety.


Q: What is the age requirement to become a state trooper in NC?
A: The minimum age requirement to become a state trooper in NC is 21 years old.

Q: Do I need a college degree to become a state trooper?
A: No, a college degree is not required. However, having a degree can enhance your chances of being selected and may lead to career advancement opportunities.

Q: Are there any physical fitness requirements?
A: Yes, there are physical fitness requirements. Applicants must pass a physical fitness assessment, which includes tests such as push-ups, sit-ups, a 1.5-mile run, and a vertical jump.

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Q: Can I apply if I have a criminal record?
A: Applicants with felony convictions are generally disqualified from becoming state troopers. However, each case is evaluated individually, and certain factors may be considered in the hiring process.

Q: How long is the training academy?
A: The North Carolina State Highway Patrol Training Academy typically lasts approximately 29 weeks.

Q: Is there a probationary period after becoming a state trooper?
A: Yes, after successfully completing the training academy and field training, newly appointed state troopers are subject to a probationary period.

Becoming a state trooper in NC requires determination, meeting specific requirements, and successfully completing a rigorous training program. It is a career that offers the opportunity to serve the community, ensure public safety, and make a positive impact. By following the outlined steps and preparing diligently, you can pursue your dream of becoming a state trooper and contribute to the well-being of North Carolina.