Lanai High School sophomore Jayde Fernandez got a taste of a career in law enforcement recently during a tour of the Wailuku Police Station through an event organized by the Maui Economic Development Board’s Youth Alliance. “I learned what it takes to become an officer and what the career entails,” she said. “I also learned what the different departments are and what they do.” The experience has led her to consider a career in police work, specifically forensic science. “The trip to the Maui Police Department made me realize that even though it will be hard work to be a forensic scientist, it will be worth it. I got to see what goes on and now I know for sure that forensics is the career I want to pursue.”
Maui police officer Edith Quintero said it was an honor to give the students a behind-the-scenes look at law enforcement. “This gave MPD an opportunity to share the different aspects and duties within the department,” she said. The tour featured discussions about the challenges of law enforcement on Maui versus those on Molokai and Lanai. The students also discussed Maui’s crime rate, common crimes on the island, vice matters and sexual assault.
Fernandez, 15, said she was impressed with the Maui Police Department’s commitment to the community. “I feel that police in Maui County truly care about the community and do everything they can to keep it safe,” she said. “I admire them for putting their lives on the line to protect ours and think it’s really cool that they are able to tackle different situations and solve them.” Youth Alliance members attend monthly events during the school year to explore and gain a greater understanding of key components in the Maui community. Their gatherings are coordinated by MEDB.