Matthew Tyler Trains to Be a Hero

Matthew+Tyler+%28fourth+from+the+right%29+and+the+members+of+the+explorer+program+pose+for+a+picture+in+front+of+an+Orange+County+Sheriff%E2%80%99s+helicopter.+
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Matthew Tyler Trains to Be a Hero

Matthew Tyler (fourth from the right) and the members of the explorer program pose for a picture in front of an Orange County Sheriff’s helicopter.

Matthew Tyler (fourth from the right) and the members of the explorer program pose for a picture in front of an Orange County Sheriff’s helicopter.

Photo courtesy of Jorge Sanchez

Matthew Tyler (fourth from the right) and the members of the explorer program pose for a picture in front of an Orange County Sheriff’s helicopter.

Photo courtesy of Jorge Sanchez

Photo courtesy of Jorge Sanchez

Matthew Tyler (fourth from the right) and the members of the explorer program pose for a picture in front of an Orange County Sheriff’s helicopter.

Emma Trueba, Staff Writer

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When there is a blazing fire consuming the neighbor’s house down the street or a cat is suspended high above the unforgiving concrete streets with no way to escape, 9-1-1 is dialed. Within minutes, sirens blare and dispatched men come to aid. These men and women are the ones who keep the city safe. The Police Explorer program allows individuals like junior Matthew Tyler to get a taste of what it is like being in law enforcement.

 

The Police Explorer program is a high school program “designed to [teach] about law enforcement, but it also helps young men and women hold themselves to a higher standard,” explains Sergeant Jorge Sanchez of the Tustin Police Department. The typical activities of the members of this program include attending a one-week police explorer academy, weekly training meetings on Wednesdays, community service, tactical training and many other opportunities that enable students to receive the full police experience. The Explorer program is much like “going through school,” according to Tyler. New recruits are “polos,” and students with higher levels of experience are called “uniforms” and “ranks.” Tyler felt compelled to join the Police Explorer program because “it’s about protecting everyone to further the progression of humanity. It’s about making everyone safe so they don’t have to worry about fear stopping their expression.” His dedication to protecting the community shows how hardworking and determined he is.

 

Getting into the Explorer program is no walk in the park. There is an intense interview process after attending three consecutive Wednesday meetings and a background investigation before being accepted into the program. Once they have earned their uniforms, explorers have the opportunity to apply for a position of rank within the program. Tyler has gone through the interview process for the Field Training Officer and recently was promoted to the rank of Sergeant, which is in charge of a platoon or group of explorers and other duties.

 

Tyler was interested in law enforcement before he became involved in the Explorer program, but after joining the explorers, he became even more passionate about being involved in learning how to protect others. When Tyler first started the program, Sanchez says he “started out very quiet and timid but has come out of his shell since then.” After being in the program for a little over a year, Tyler has come to find a family through this program. His closest friends are those that he has gotten to know by being an explorer.

 

Not only is Tyler training to be a hero, but he is also an exceptional student. His Spanish teacher, Ms. Coe, says “he is a high performing student that likes [the Explorer program] and giving back to the community.” Tyler’s favorite subjects in school are psychology and physics because he “like[s] learning about how the world and people work because once you learn how something works, it is easier to predict or change the outcomes of future events.” He is interested in mechanics and his interest in how things operate has furthered his interest in police work.

 

In five to ten years, Tyler sees himself in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) or the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). He feels as though he would be able to better help the country through being a part of one of these federal organizations. Due to his involvement with the Explorer program, he will always have the police profession as a backup plan. Tyler’s mom is supportive of his dreams to be in law enforcement, but she worries the dangers that accompany this line of work. However, for Tyler, the dangers that accompany a job in law enforcement are all worth it, as he is extremely passionate about protecting his community.

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Matthew Tyler Trains to Be a Hero