Joshua Echeverria had the privilege and opportunity to be a part of San Bernardino schools’ explorers program. He learned the program allows young adults to explore the idea of a career in law enforcement.

Now enrolled at San Bernardino Valley College, Joshua is pursuing a degree in administrative justice. When Joshua joined the San Bernardino City Unified School District’s Police Department Explorers Program, he was 15 years old and a high school sophomore.

In life, things happen for a reason, and Joshua joined the program at a critical time in his life, as many outside social and environmental factors were present such as poverty, gang activity/recruitment and narcotics. Joshua said this program “taught the importance of integrity, self-respect, and not to let outside factors influence my life. I have learned structure, responsibility, discipline and even developed leadership qualities. The Explorers Program has benefited my life and has placed me on a path to achieve success.” 
Joshua shared how this program helped a good friend who was faced with similar challenges that he had growing up in San Bernardino. He overcame these factors with mentoring and guidance from those in charge.

This program offers a career pathway for youth who are interested in pursuing a profession in law enforcement. Explorer Advisors mentor and provide guidance to participants, giving them the skills to be successful and pursue furthering their education. 
“I can say with confidence; this program changed my life,” Joshua said. 
“After I complete my associate’s degree in administrative justice at San Bernardino Valley College, I will be applying to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Academy,” he said. Once through the academy, “I plan on applying for the position of school police officer with the SBCUSD Police Department. I want to give back not only to my community but to the SBCUSD Police Department, for making a program like this available to youth, like myself and others.” 
Article from SB Sun