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By Matt DeLucia

40 new graduates of the police academy will soon hit the streets of Springfield and Chicopee. The graduates trained at Westover Air Reserve Base for the past five months.

25 Springfield and 15 Chicopee police officers will soon be joining their comrades on the city streets. At a graduation ceremony Thursday afternoon at Westover Air Reserve Base, the new officers received their badges and took the oath of their departments.
Springfield Police Commissioner William Fitchet and Chicopee Police Chief John Ferraro welcomed the new graduates onto the force.
"It's a joint police academy," Ferraro said. "I partnered up with Commissioner Fitchet, and it was a real success. It only made sense that the two largest cities in Western Mass. train together."
Springfield Academy Class #1108 spent the past 22 weeks training at Westover, learning how to fight crime and protect their city's citizens. Before, it was common for recruits from the two cities to train separately. Chief Ferraro says the new group of officers are ready for the challenges that lie ahead.
"We're looking for the very best. We only take the best talent we can get," said Ferraro.
Among all the pomp and circumstance of Thursday's ceremony, a deeper mission was evident. Matthew Benoit, class president said the day was special, adding that it took a lot of work to get where they are today.
"There were a lot of ups and downs, a lot of personal struggles within the class and at home," Benoit said. "Everyone pulled together as one team and accomplished the goal of graduating and becoming police officers."

http://www.cbs3springfield.com/news/local/34438374.html
 
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