'I'm just excited to get out there': New Milwaukee police officers earn their badges

NOW: ’I’m just excited to get out there’: New Milwaukee police officers earn their badges

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) --The Milwaukee Police Department added 26 new police officers to their roster. The new members graduated Thursday, Feb. 17. 

"I feel great, a new journey to my life," Lupe Rivera said.

Lupe Rivera, 24, is now a Milwaukee police officer. After six months of training, Rivera and 25 officers earned their badges. 

"I want you to think about the enthusiasm you feel today, and as your career progresses, maintain that positive outlook. Going forward your patience will be tested," Acting Mayor Cavalier Johnson said. 

Rivera grew up in Milwaukee. He says he wants to be part of the change, helping to heal and protect the city. He told CBS 58's Winnie Dortch that it's time for the community to see a new side of the department. 

The recruit graduating class of 1-2021 is already ahead of the game, a class that has set a lot of "firsts" for the Milwaukee Police Department.

"They're the first class to receive our active bystandership and law enforcement training. First one in the state of Wisconsin, so they are going to be leaders across the state, making sure they are doing practices to prevent harm and reduce mistakes," Police Captain Timothy Leitzke said. 

The group is also the first to receive a full course on procedural justice. 

Rivera knows there's more to learn and he says he is ready to serve and protect. 

"I'm just excited to get out there," Rivera said. 

The officers will do field training for 14 weeks. 

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