Hear from City Colleges of Chicago Alumni in Law Enforcement


About this Program

student reading a book in the library

Pathway to Policing is a one-year program for students interested in becoming Chicago police officers. When you successfully complete the program and earn your associate degree in just 12 months, you will be prepared to enter the Chicago Police Academy.

Classes are offered in-person, online-only, and bilingual (Spanish/English).

You will:

• Go through this program with a cohort – one group that takes their classes together

• Receive a City Colleges laptop to borrow while you complete your associate degree

• Have full access to Olive-Harvey’s fitness facility, as well as all our student resources and support services

• Prepare specifically for police exams, including the physical exam and power test

Upon completing the program through Olive-Harvey College, the written exam for entrance into the Chicago Police Academy will be waived. So don’t wait – click here to apply now!

Interested in learning more about the program? Attend an upcoming information session.


  • Must be at least 20 years old to begin this program at Olive-Harvey College, because the Chicago Police Department requires candidates entering the police academy to be 21 years old
  • Must submit transcripts from all previous colleges attended; 2.0 GPA required
  • Must apply for federal financial aid (FAFSA)
  • If you have not taken and passed a college-level English course (i.e. English 101), you must take the English placement test and test into college-level English
  • Must attend a program orientation

Please note that enrollment and completion of this program does not guarantee acceptance into the Chicago Police Academy.

students working in a computer lab

Ready to get started? Apply today.

Follow these steps to apply to City Colleges of Chicago.

icon-arrow 1. Fill out the Interest Form below
icon-arrow 2. Click here to fill out an application.
icon-arrow 3. Check your email for your acceptance, along with your username and password.
icon-arrow 4. Take a look at the admissions guide to learn more about what you will need to start your City Colleges journey.

Interested? Fill out the form to learn more

Olive-Harvey is accepting applications for the 2024 program, and we are now offering online-only, in-person, and bilingual cohorts.

Potential Careers

In addition to setting students up for success with the Chicago Police Department, this degree can also prepare you for these other careers:


Air Marshal


Counter-Terrorism Analyst


Customs Officer


Forensic Psychologist


Fraud Investigator


Park Ranger Surveillance Officer

Time Commitment

If students follow the sample curriculum below, they will be able to successfully complete the program in 12 months - that’s half the time it usually takes.

Pathway to Policing - Sample curriculum

For more information about Pathway to Policing, email ohc-crimjustice@ccc.edu.