Questions Posted to "Ask a Dispatcher"
Q. In Alaska, what are the training requirements for a 911 Telecommunicator?
Dear Juneau Resident,
There isn't a state license for Telecommunicator like there is for many jobs. There is a state requirement for a background check and written test to allow a person to access confidential information through the Department of Public Safety. This confidential information has to do with criminal histories, DMV information, that kind of thing.
Departments like JPD have a structured training program with multiple classes that cover telecommunicator duties and are recognized by an industry group called the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officals (APCO). There are also weeks of on the job training with current dispatchers before one is turned loose as a full fledged dispatcher.
If you are interested in becoming a 911 Telecommunicator you should contact the department where you want to work and ask for details about that department's training program. JPD is not hiring dispatchers right now but certainly will in the future. If you watch for CBJ job announcements, you will see when JPD is recruiting. Hope to see you then!