BATON ROUGE - The Baton Rouge Police Academy opened it's doors Saturday to show what the department has to offer.
It was well attended with people like Tykisha Knighten, who has a degree in criminal justice, but a personal experience inspired her to come here.
"I had an uncle who was killed. And after seeing the way that they handled the case and the situation and everything, it made be want to become more involved with BRPD," Knighten said.
And Gardell Palmer, who has a family member in law enforcement.
"My older brother has been a Louisiana State Trooper for 12 or 13 years and he's what inspired me," Palmer said.
But being a cop is no walk in the park, it's very dangerous work.
In Baton Ruge alone, four law enforcement officers were killed in the line of duty in the last eight and a half months. But that danger is not turning away these applicants.
"Yes I absolutely want to be one. I want to help the families that tragedies might strike," applicant Ueisha Boreaux said.
BRPD is looking for more than a few good men or women. The department is down more than 50 officers, but they are looking for applicants with certain qualifications.
And that means candidates with more than just a good education.
"We not only look at grades and different things, but we also look at how they operate in their communities, community involvement things that they do in their communities that go above and beyond," Police Chief Carl Dabadie said.
Even though dozens filled out applications today, this is the just the first step in the long process of becoming an officer and wearing the badge of the BRPD.