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Photo Gallery | WSP candidates test with the wind at their backs

Not even a college final was as quiet as the Washington State Patrol’s trooper hopefuls taking the written test that could pave the way to their future career. One by one, the 20 men wrapped up their answers and waited in Eastern Washington’s WSP headquarters, stretching, pacing, quietly chatting to each other.

“Relax! Stretch out! Breathe deep,” were the words spoken by Tina Wallman, WSP recruiter to the men in the lobby.

One man said the written test takes a lot out of you. They would need their energy for the moments to come, the upcoming test of the physical feats.

Based on your age and gender, the requirements are different. With no women taking the test that Friday, the majority of men, ages 20-29 would be required to accomplish 38 sit-ups and 29 push-ups in one minute. They’d also be required to run 1.5 miles in 12:29 minutes or less.

The men lined up along West Geiger Blvd, stretching for their run. The smell of nearby cows wafted onto the road. A Spokane County Sheriff’s Deputy patrolled in the distance. With the northeast wind on their back, they launched to the rendezvous point where troopers were waiting for them.

The first runner finished at 9:27. He was handed a green card that designated him as the number one runner in the physical test.

Only two runners didn’t complete the time needed to finish.

One 44-year-old from Ritzville was hoping to make this day the day he makes his big career change from information technology to law enforcement. He wanted to do this sooner, when he was in his 20s, but life, he said, got in the way.

“I’m not too old to do these things,” he said. He was concerned about revealing his identity, because he still has a job to return to.

Though he made the time for running, he did not pass the requirements for sit-ups. His body buckled when it came down to the final sit-up. The other men surrounded him, cheering him on, but the muscles stopped. Time was up. He wasn’t even the oldest there taking the WSP test.

“There’s no curve for old guys like us,” he added.

Five out of the 20 men did not pass the physical tests that day. Wallman says the toughest part of the tests is getting in and actually taking a seat.

“Do you have what it takes?” Wallman asked. “Some them can be surprised.”

The men that passed today’s tests will continue on to the Oral Board in Olympia, a panel that asks situational questions that test common sense based on previous WSP experiences. From there a polygraph is taken and then a background check is made. Four phases total, all to be accomplished before the next Army Class begins on April 30th.

More Information: Curious to read the other requirements to become a trooper? Read them online. The next written and fitness test is April 14th.

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