How to Become a Police Officer in Tulsa

Once known as the “Oil Capital of the World,” Tulsa, Oklahoma now boasts a diverse economic base, a population of nearly 400,000, and an enviable unemployment rate of 4%.1 Tulsa is the second-largest city in the state and is often referred to as the hub of arts and culture for Oklahoma. Residents can also enjoy recreation and scenery in the nearby Ozark Mountains and on the Arkansas River. For those hoping to join the dedicated Tulsa Police Department patrolling and protecting the city, the application process is outlined below.

Tulsa Police Officer Requirements

The minimum requirements to be considered for a job as a cop with the Tulsa Police Department (TPD) include an age between 21 and 45 and US citizenship. Applicants must also be free of any felony convictions and have a bachelor’s degree with a minimum of a C+ average. Candidates must also demonstrate adequate vision and hearing to be able to perform the job requirements of a police officer.

The first step in applying for a position with the TPD is to fill out an extensive, online background information questionnaire. If the questionnaire demonstrates a candidate meets the minimum requirements, he or she may then take the written and physical fitness tests as invited by the TPD recruiting staff. Those who pass the tests may then be interviewed and offered conditional employment. New recruits must pass medical and psychological screenings and basic training before becoming sworn officers.

For more information about how to become a cop in a typical big city, see 10 Steps to Becoming a Police Officer on our home page. If you are ready to apply now, find specific application information at Tulsa Police Department – Recruiting.

Chief of Police Chuck Jordan is the 39th leader of the Tulsa Police Department and has been in the current position since 2010. Throughout his career, which began with the TPD in 1969, Chief Jordan has held several different positions, including as one of the first members of the SWAT team in 1978. Jordan earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Phoenix.

Tulsa Police Department Information

The TPD serves a large city with 800 sworn officers as well as many civilian employees.2 The Department was first founded in 1905 and today consists of patrol officers as well as police working in specialty units including a motorcycle squad, K-9 unit, air patrol, and dive team. The men and women of the TPD are not just devoted to their duties; they are also stylish. The Department won the Best Dressed Law Enforcement Agency honor in 2006.

Tulsa Police Training Academy

The Tulsa Police Academy has been in operation since 1967 and today’s location is a state-of-the-art training facility. New recruits must pass the 25-week rigorous training program as well as 16 weeks of subsequent field training before becoming sworn officers on the force. Current officers also receive 40 hours of in-service training through the Academy each year.

Tulsa Police Salary and Jobs Outlook

A new officer with the TPD earns a starting salary of $45,962 and begins earning as soon as the Academy begins.2 In addition to the salary, which can rise to $67,286 for a patrol officer, cops also receive several benefits.2 These include education and longevity pay, vacation and sick leave, medical and life insurance, and retirement benefits. The average salary for a cop in Tulsa is $44,920.3

Economic projections suggest that growth in law enforcement jobs in Oklahoma will be positive in the future. Predictions are that growth will be 15.8%, or an average of 400 new jobs every year, between now and 2022.4

How to Learn More about the Department and Crime in Tulsa

The TPD offers a few ways in which residents can get involved and learn more about the Department and crime in the city. Adults 18 years and older can participate in a Citizen Ride Along, which gives residents a unique view into the daily activities of officers. Young people between the ages of 15 and 18 are encouraged to join the Tulsa Police Explorers, a program that gives teens specialized training and experience with law enforcement careers.

Contact Information

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tulsa-Police-Department/50187668662
Twitter: @TulsaPolice

Tulsa Police Department
600 Civic Center
Tulsa, OK 74103

Additional Resources

1. Oklahoma State Fraternal Order of Police: http://www.okfop.org/
2. Tulsa Fraternal Order of Police: http://www.tulsafop93.org/
3. Oklahoma Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association: http://ospoa.org/

1. Sperling’s Best Places, Tulsa Oklahoma: https://www.bestplaces.net/city/oklahoma/tulsa
2. Tulsa Police Department: https://www.tulsapolice.org/
3. US Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2014 Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Tulsa, OK: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_46140.htm#33-0000
4. Projections Central: http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm