West Virginia | How to Start Your Police Career

To start a police officer career in West Virginia, a potential applicant needs to meet the state required minimum provisions. The state specific police career requirements are outlined below. If an applicant fulfills the requirements, he or she might then move forward with applying for an available position. If a department is interested in a candidates application, they may then contact the individual to have them complete a written examination. This exam will test a person’s basic ability to read and write and do arithmetic. If the person passes this test, they may be asked to complete a physical ability test and then complete an oral interview, which usually takes place with a board of officers. If a candidate performs well, then a background check will be done on him or her. After passing the background check a person will need to complete a psychological test and medical exam before being offered a position. If an applicant is offered a police position they will also be offered training at a police academy in West Virginia.

West Virginia Police Officer Job Requirements

The basic requirements for becoming an officer in West Virginia are that a person needs to be 21. They also need to make sure they have a valid license and that they are a legal United States citizen. Applicants for a police job in West Virginia need to have graduated high school or have accomplished their GED certificate. Furthermore, they need to have a mostly clean driving record and no major criminal convictions. Ideally, a police officer candidate in West Virginia needs to be a good citizen of moral character. Police departments in West Virginia also like to see that their candidates are height and weight proportional.

Salary Overview for West Virginia

The average salary of a West Virginia police officer is around 36,000 a year. West Virginia has a lower average salary than the rest of the country but part of that has to do with the cost of living in West Virginia and also the more rural areas it has. This is, however, an average. This means that there are police officers in West Virginia who make more than 36 thousand a year and people who make less. Much of how much an officer makes has to do with three things: their level of education, how many years they have served as an officer, and what city or area of the state they work in. An officer working in a large city will often make more than less populated regions of the state. Officers who have gained promotions in rank make, on average, about 38,000 a year.

Law Enforcement Schools in West Virginia

Although the state of West Virginia does not insist upon a college degree for those applying to work as police officers, it may be advisable to get one. If an individual has a college degree in an area related to law enforcement they may be a more desirable candidate for the job than a person without a college degree. Officers who have obtained a college degree may indeed make more money than those without one. The following list are some school in West Virginia which offer degrees in subjects related to law enforcement. These programs may help a person get on the right track to becoming a police officer in West Virginia.

  • Blue Ridge Community and Technical College

13650 Apple Harvest Drive, Martinsburg, WV 25403


  • Bluefield State College

219 Rock Street, Bluefield, WV 24701


  • Fairmont State University

1201 Locust Avenue, Fairmont, WV 26554


  • Glenville State College

200 High Street, Glenville, WV 26351


  • Marshall University

1 John Marshall Drive, Huntington, WV


  • Mountwest Community and Technical College

1 John Marshall Way, Huntington, WV 25755


  • New River Community and Technical College

280 University Drive, Beaver, WV 25813


  • Potomac State College of West Virginia University

101 Fort Avenue, Keyser, WV 26726


  • Salem International University

223 West Main Street, Salem, WV 26426


  • West Liberty University

101 Faculty Drive, West Liberty, WV 26074


  • West Virginia University

Stewart Hall, Morgantown, WV 26506


  • West Virginia University at Parkersburg

300 Campus Drive, Parkersburg, WV 26104


  • West Virginia Wesleyan College

59 College Avenue, Buckhannon, WV 26201