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SPOTLIGHT Exploring a Great Conference

Every two years, the National Learning for Life office hosts the National Law Enforcement Exploring Conference, which brings together Explorers from all over the country who have an inter- est in law-enforcement careers. With seminars, networking sessions, demon- strations, competitions, entertainment and more, it’s a great way for Explorers to get an up-close, firsthand look at the profession they hope to enter. This year’s conference, held in July

at Indiana University in Bloomington, gave some 2,641 Explorers from 248 posts a dazzling over- view of important careers in law enforcement, with experts including local police, sheriffs, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. At each conference, Explorers watch demonstrations

from various law enforcement professionals. They also mix and mingle with high-ranking officials like Julia Pierson, head of the United States Secret Service. Pierson, the first female head of the service, credits the Exploring program with shaping her career. She joined the organization at 15 because, among other things, she wanted to do a ride-along with a police officer. Later, she attended the national conference. “That’s what made her decide on a federal law enforce-

ment career,” says Bill Taylor, director of Exploring. “We hear stories like that from Explorers all the time.” Besides meeting with professionals and attending a career fair, Taylor says Explorers are really drawn to the

HIGH ADVENTURE Register Now for Philmont in 2016

Dreaming of taking a Philmont trek in 2016? We know the feeling. Now’s the time to enter Philmont’s

famous trek lottery for seven- and 12-day treks in summer 2016.


various competitions in such activities as arrest and search, bomb-threat response, crisis negotiation, crime-scene search and white-collar crime. Team members from the posts work on these skills during the year. This year, the DEA used acting students from Indiana

University in some of the scenarios. “The experts judge how the contestants react,” Taylor says. “If there’s a hostage, for instance, the teams must develop a plan in a set time frame.” The national conference is one of the standout offerings of

Exploring, the coed Scouting program for youth ranging from 14 to 21 years old. Explorers choose from 12 career fields, of which law enforcement is the most popular concentration, says Taylor. “If they do go into this for a career, they’ll have a leg

up on people who weren’t in Exploring,” Taylor says. “All the Explorer fields really give young people a feel for what happens in that career.” Find more information on the conference and the Exploring program at

First, complete the registration

worksheet, which you can find online at Next, sometime between Oct. 29

and Nov. 19, 2014, point your browser to Crew sizes may range from seven

to 12 individuals, and each crew must have a minimum of two adults but no more than four. Adults must be 21 years of age or older, and the majority


of the crew must be youth. Venturers, you’re invited, too.

Coed crews must have at least one female adult and one male adult. Lottery winners are notified

after the first week in December. If you aren’t selected, you can always contact your local council and ask to join a contingent crew. Good luck, and happy trekking!

– B.W.


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