Scericka Bates wants to become a member of the Oklahoma Highway Patrol and she knows what to expect as she works towards her career goals.
Bates is a Northern Oklahoma College sophomore majoring in Criminal Justice. She experienced the life of a Highway Patrol office this semester during an internship with the OHP.
Bates participated in ride alongs, witnessed traffic stops, and observed the computer and communication systems the OHP use to run vehicle tags and identification cards.
“In my criminal justice classes, we frequently discussed traffic stops, arrest, and dispatch. I got to experience routine traffic stops with an officer of the law,” said Bates. “This is exactly why internships are important in Criminal Justice, to be able to see what we are teaching in real world application” added Criminal Justice Instructor Troy Cochran.
Renee’ Contrill is a dispatcher for the OK Highway Patrol. Bates spent time listening in on phone calls and learned how to communicate in different situations.
Bates said, “Dispatch has a lot more to handle then just answering phone calls, dispatching troopers, and operating the radio. I learned that communications at the Enid headquarters is the only dispatch in Oklahoma that dispatched for two troops.”
Trooper Robert Contrill allowed Bates to ride along on most of her outings with the OHP. She was surprised at how much freedom the OHP has to roam compared to local police officers.
“I have been truly blessed to be able to work with the Contrill’s. They are very positive people who have answered all my questions related to OHP and provided me with plenty of information,” said Bates.
Bates continued, “For as long as I can remember I have been set on what I wanted my career to be. Being able to be in the passenger seat has showed me that a career with the OHP is everything I’ve desired and more. I was able to see the perspective of a police officer.”
Bates will graduate from NOC in December with an Associate of Science in Criminal Justice and in May, 2019 with a second degree in Business Administration. After graduation, she plans to attend Northwestern Oklahoma State University in Enid and major in Business Administration before heading to the OHP Academy.
Bates is a 2016 graduate of Enid High School.
Caption: Scericka Bates stands beside Trooper Lisa Jorgensen’s unit. Jorgensen is the only Female Highway Patrol officer in Troop J.