The Alaska State Troopers are primarily a rural police department. Alaska does not have counties, Sheriff’s Offices or Deputies. The Alaska State Troopers provide complete law enforcement services for areas outside of the traditional “city limits” of most Alaska cities. While new troopers start their careers in our three most urban posts (Palmer/Wasilla, Fairbanks and Soldotna), most of our other posts are in semi-rural (on the road or ferry system) or very rural areas (villages off the road or ferry system). Troopers are expected to move at least one time in their career prior to having five years of service with us. Many choose to move several times throughout their career based upon their wishes, goals for professional and personal growth and desire to see all that this tremendous state has to offer. Some choose to move to very rural areas, where the only way in is air transport, river boat, snow machine or four wheeler. These are places like Aniak, Bethel, Nome and Kotzebue. Their pay is significantly higher and they get to experience part of Alaska most people only see in photographs. Some choose to remain on the road system, in semi-rural areas like Glennallen, Tok, Anchor Point and Delta Junction. Others choose to live in Southeast Alaska, where travel options include both air and ferry, and town sizes vary from under a thousand to over 35,000. Some choose to move to very rural posts, where they work 2 weeks on, then have 2 weeks off, though these assignments usually go to the most senior troopers. The Trooper chooses where he or she wants to transfer to, based upon seniority and what is available at the time. There is a tremendous amount of flexibility for lateral movement, as well as vertical movement. Under rare circumstances, those who don’t move prior to five years of service may be called upon to move to a location which was not filled by volunteer request.
We are looking for those who want to serve outside the box, outside of traditional city limits. Our Troopers are often challenged to come up with creative, innovative solutions to solve problems in rural or semi-rural areas with little backup or oversight. Weather and transportation are often our biggest challenges. Those who want to live and work in a city environment and experience a city lifestyle often struggle with the unknowns of living in a more remote area. However, the almost universal reaction of Troopers who move to those areas are that they love the challenge, the lifestyle and the people. Like all things in life, you get out of the experience what you are willing to put into it. If you only want to be a city cop, there is nothing wrong with that, but we may not be the right fit for you. But those who thrive in challenging situations, who want to experience all that Alaska has to offer, who maintain a high degree of self-initiative and who are creative problem solvers, make the best Troopers. The challenges of serving the communities in rural Alaska are great, but if you want to be part of the team of only 400 Troopers who have risen to this challenge, this may be the career for you. In our nation, we are a unique law enforcement agency and we have the privilege of working in the most beautiful and rugged landscape in the world. We have risen to the challenge. We are Alaska. Will you join us?