By Lindsay Doty
Dressed in the blue uniform adorned with a shiny badge, newly sworn-in Indiana State Trooper Brianna Bishop proudly poses for a photo at the Indiana Statehouse. The Avon High School graduate was one of 36 new troopers to be sworn in on Dec. 19 at the 80th Indiana State Police Recruit Academy’s graduation ceremony.
Bishop, who delivered the keynote speech, called the moment rewarding after months of grueling training.
“I felt like those six months at the academy that felt so long, it was all worth it in the end. it was everything I worked for,” she said.
“During the speech, I talked about the instructors at the academy and how they made a difference in us and allowed us to have confidence in ourselves”
The program requires 25 weeks of intense training but with COVID-19, the journey took 37 weeks. Bishop describes the long days and nights as challenging. Areas included criminal and traffic law, crash investigations, emergency vehicle operations, defensive tactics, firearms and a host of other subjects related to modern policing.
While her family couldn’t attend the ceremony in person due to pandemic restrictions, Bishop drove to Illinois the next morning to celebrate with loved ones.
“I was able to go home in my uniform, and my siblings pinned my badge on me,” said Bishop, who is one of seven children.
The 21-year-old is the first person in her family to have a career in law enforcement. She was inspired after hearing a state trooper speak while attending Indiana State University.
“They had a rookie probation trooper come to talk. I thought this is cool to have someone new come to speak about the department and all the opportunities. It was a woman,” Bishop recalled.
Her interest led to an internship with the police academy and U.S. Marshals Service.
Now, an Indiana State Trooper, Bishop has been assigned the Indianapolis post. New troopers will spend the next three months working side by side with a series of experienced field training officers. They will then be assigned a state police patrol vehicle and will begin solo patrol in their assigned districts.
As Trooper Bishop begins her career during a tumultuous time riddled with political and social unrest, she often gets asked, “Why would you be a trooper now?”
“I tell them honestly there isn’t a better time to be a trooper,” she said. “This my chance to make a difference and be that person to change peoples’ minds about law enforcement.”