Olympia– Cadets from the Washington State Patrol’s 107th Trooper Basic Training Course are one step closer to becoming fully-commissioned troopers.

April 25th marked the first day of celebrations for these 49 cadets. Starting with a badge pinning ceremony and open house for family and friends; the excitement for tomorrow’s graduation at the Capitol Campus was evident in everyone’s smiling faces.

Several of the graduates also received awards at the open house for their achievement in driving, firearms, fitness, tactics, academics, and more! The award recipients are:

Top Driving Award: Trooper Brent P. Ashton

Top Firearms Award: Trooper Nathaniel R. Dawson

Top Fitness/Top Control Tactics Award: Trooper Jacob C. Pont

Top Academic Award: Trooper Brent P. Ashton

Top Collision Investigation Award: Trooper Bryce C. Schramm

Top Overall Cadet Award: Trooper Christopher T. Huhta

The Washington State Patrol is proud to welcome these new officers to its ranks, but these cadets didn’t get to where they are without both encouragement and challenges along the way.

Tomorrow’s graduation follows more than 1,000 hours of rigorous training which included undergoing everything from being sprayed with Pepper Spray to learning Washington State laws.

Here are some of their stories:

While these three stories shed light on the reality of a life in law enforcement, the other 46 cadets all have their own reason that drove them to answer the call for service.

For some, working in this profession is a family affair. The following cadets have relatives who work or have worked in law enforcement:

Cadet Relationship Agency
Phillip Berg Brother-in-law WSP
Chelsea Dehart Father WSP
Thomas Harms Grandfather Burlington Northern RR PD
Christopher Huhta Uncle Longview PD
Jeffrey Isaac Father-in-law Spokane County SO
Thomas Mergargle Brother-in-law Seattle PD
Cody Pratt Uncle California Highway Patrol
Steven Spaude Father Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Eyzik Sporleder Step-father Post Falls Idaho PD
Jonathan Tyler Father Seattle PD and Chief of Police for Indo, CA PD
Nolan Washington Father


King County SO

Seattle PD

Tomorrow’s official graduation ceremony will take place at the Legislative Building Rotunda, starting at 2 p.m. We understand that not everyone can make the trip to Olympia for the graduation, but don’t worry…whatever your situation, we’ve got you covered. We’ll be live-streaming tomorrow’s graduation on Facebook and Twitter as well as giving you behind-the-scenes looks and interviews on Instagram. However you want to tune in, we thank you for your support and look forward to sharing this special event with you.