The Community Outreach Program is a nationwide initiative that connects local FBI offices with their communities. The CJIS Division Community Outreach Program includes community outreach specialists who coordinate programs and lead teams of volunteers from the FBI to provide meaningful services to communities in North Central West Virginia and beyond. Learn more about our efforts below.
Child Identification and Safety
Community Fingerprinting Program
Trained FBI staff provide free fingerprinting services to parents at area schools, day care centers, shopping malls, fairs, and festivals. Using portable fingerprint scanners and webcams, we create identification sheets for parents that bear their child's identifying information, including a photo, fingerprints, and other personal data. Neither the FBI nor any other law enforcement agency retains any of the identifying information, but provides the sheets to parents or guardians to retain in case of an emergency.
American Football Coaches Association Partnership
The FBI has joined with the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) in the distribution of the National Child Identification Program (NCIDP) kits. The NCIDP kit provides parents/guardians with the resources to fingerprint their children, save a DNA sample, and record other personal information to maintain as a permanent record in the event of a disaster, abduction, or runaway situation involving their child.
The Stranger Danger presentation educates area youth about staying safe and provides practical information to prevent abduction, child abuse, and Internet stalking.
Community outreach personnel offer a program on Internet safety that includes scenarios depicting safe practices and proper etiquette on the web. This program is available to area schools (both students and faculty) as well as other community organizations.
Community Outreach Program personnel and volunteers share a lot of important information with the young people in our area schools through the following programs:
- Partners for Citizenship and Education (PCE)
- Students Who Achieve Today (SWAT) Team
FBI Partners for Citizenship and Education (PCE) Program
Our youth are the future, and the CJIS Division makes the PCE Program a priority. The PCE Program fosters a special connection with several area schools:
- Volga-Century Elementary School
- Adamston Elementary School
- Genesis Youth Crisis Center, Inc.
- South Harrison High School
- Jane Lew Elementary School
- Flemington Elementary School
The FBI takes pride in participating in this award-winning program. The PCE Program is a past recipient of the Gold Star Award from the West Virginia Education Alliance.
The PCE Program consists of these programs:
- Hardest Working Student Award
- Junior Special Agent Program
- Student's Academy
Hardest Working Student Award
Each year, the FBI honors students who have demonstrated the value of giving their best at every task, both in and out of the classroom. Teachers from each of the PCE Program schools select students to receive the Hardest Working Student award, and the assistant director of the CJIS Division recognizes the recipients during a ceremony at the CJIS complex.
Junior Special Agent Program
Fourth- and fifth-grade students from the CJIS Division's partner schools are given the opportunity to participate in the Junior Special Agent Program. This program stresses the importance of good citizenship and doing one's best in all endeavors. FBI employees provide a bi-weekly overview of FBI and CJIS Division programs as well as lessons on civic duty. Students who complete the program are presented with a Junior Special Agent badge and credentials by the assistant director of the CJIS Division during a graduation ceremony held at the CJIS Division complex.
The FBI provides a 12-week course that gives students at South Harrison High School an inside view of the FBI. This course is designed to create a dialogue with high school students and promote a greater understanding of the FBI, its mission, and its role as a law enforcement and intelligence agency.
Students Who Achieve Today (SWAT) Team
Area high school students involved in the SWAT Team assist in projects such as child identification fingerprinting, producing public service announcements, creating drug and alcohol awareness posters, distributing child identification kits, and serving as ushers or escorts at FBI ceremonies. The Valley High School SWAT Team, located in Wetzel County, West Virginia, is a past recipient of the Attorney General's Community Service Award.
This program allows area high school students to be actively involved in FBI outreach activities. Some of these activities include: community fingerprinting; serving as ushers and escorts at high-profile FBI ceremonies; acting and assisting in the production of public service announcements; producing drug and alcohol awareness posters; and distributing child identification kits. The SWAT Team from Valley High School in Wetzel County won the 2001 U.S. Attorney General's Community Service Award.
FBI Citizens' Academy
The CJIS Division partners with the Pittsburgh Division’s Clarksburg Resident Agency to host an eight-week FBI Citizens' Academy each fall. This course creates a dialogue with local citizens and promotes greater understanding of the FBI, its mission, and its multifaceted role as a law enforcement and intelligence agency.
The CJIS Division´s Citizens' Academy began in 2005, and more than 100 students have graduated from the program.
FBI Citizens' Academy students are local business, civic, religious, or community leaders who meet the following criteria:
- Are at least 18 years of age;
- Have no prior felony convictions;
- Live or work within the jurisdiction of the local field office; and
- Are able to pass a security check assessment.
Candidates are nominated by FBI executives, often based upon recommendations from Citizens' Academy graduates. Candidates are then selected by the CJIS assistant director, along with assistance from the community outreach specialist.
What Do Participants Learn?
Through frank discussions and education, students gain insight into the structure and operation of an FBI field office and resident agency, as well as of FBI Headquarters. Some activities are hands-on, including participating in firearms demonstrations and solving problems like how to collect and preserve physical evidence. The students are also briefed on the legal basis for the FBI’s jurisdiction, issues relating to congressional oversight, and the services the FBI provides to local and state law enforcement agencies.
Academy classes are taught by FBI staff and/or others approved by the CJIS assistant director.
FBI Citizens' Academy Alumni Association
The FBI Citizens' Academy Alumni Association - Clarksburg Chapter was officially formed in January 2010. The three original members of the board of directors have recently elected six additional members.
All FBI Citizens' Academy Alumni Associations (CAAA) are non-profit organizations made up of FBI Citizens' Academy graduates who support the goals and mission of the program. Each CAAA works to promote safer communities by participating in community service projects and efforts to educate business, religious, government, senior citizens, and other community leaders about law enforcement, with particular emphasis on the mission and activities of the FBI.
Community and School Presentations
We coordinate presentations provided to schools and community groups in our area. Programs are provided on a variety of topics, including:
By learning about diversity, we can reject stereotypes and misconceptions about those who are different from ourselves. CJIS employees are proud to present programs that share their cultural diversity with area students. Each February, for example, FBI staff present a Black History Month program to area schools. The program includes a choir of FBI employees who sing traditional and historical African-American music. Choir members discuss the songs with the children to further cultivate cultural awareness.
The three FBI Police Explosives Detection K-9 Handler teams at the CJIS Division offer K-9 demonstrations to local communities, including at area schools and during tours of the CJIS Division facility.
Community Outreach Program personnel are available to provide information to area schools and community groups about keeping children safe. The Stranger Danger and Internet Safety presentations are described more above.
The CJIS Division and area FBI offices can provide guest speakers to local organizations, parent groups, and area students to explain the mission of the FBI and the programs the FBI operates to achieve that mission.
Recognition and Remembrance Programs
The Community Outreach Program sponsors the annual Memorial Ceremony that remembers and honors fallen law enforcement officers in West Virginia. In addition, program staff coordinates the FBI Director's Community Leadership Award Program each year.
Memorial Ceremony in Honor of Fallen West Virginia Law Enforcement Officers
In May 1996, then West Virginia Governor Cecil H. Underwood presented a proclamation declaring the second week in May as "Fallen West Virginia Law Enforcement Officers Week." Law enforcement officials and community leaders from West Virginia participate in a ceremony at the CJIS Division complex that honors West Virginia law enforcement officers who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
FBI Director's Community Leadership Award
Since 1990, the FBI has given the Director's Community Leadership Award to publicly recognize the achievements of individuals and organizations that make a major impact in their communities. The CJIS Division's assistant director presents each year's recipient with the award locally. Then, during a national ceremony at FBI Headquarters, the award is presented by the FBI Director.