By UCL Careers, on 26 November 2014
As part of our #UCLInspireMe series, Rhona Hunt, Police Officer talks to us about how she decided to join the Met some tips for UCL students who may be considering taking part in the Police Now scheme.
How did you get into your role?
Policing, as a career, does not cross the minds of most graduates and those that do consider it are often put off by common misconceptions about the job.
I studied Speech and Language Therapy at UCL. After graduating in 2013 I turned to a career with the Metropolitan Police Service as a Police Officer. This decision baffled my peers and family members.
I always knew that I wanted to work with people and make a difference to people’s lives. In my first year at UCL I applied to be a volunteer Police Officer (Special Constable) with the Met. During my first two shifts I attended a large disturbance at an illegal rave and a stabbing. After that I was hooked. For the next three years Policing became my hobby and I worked as a Special Sergeant in Camden Borough.
I worked on the Emergency Response Team answering 999 calls to rapes, serious assaults and pretty much anything else you can imagine. I also worked with detectives on murder investigations and serious sexual assault investigations. I policed the Royal Wedding, the Olympics and the Paralympics.
During these three years I met people from every background you can imagine and encountered the very best, and the very worst of humanity.
It was the most interesting, challenging, exciting and satisfying job I could imagine and I knew I had found the career I wished to pursue.
After graduating I joined the Met as a full time Police Officer. For the last 12 months I have been working in Neighbourhood Policing in Hackney and I haven’t looked back.
What are the best things about working in your role?
You can make a real difference. My role encompasses such variety but everything you do has meaning and purpose; helping people, preventing crime, solving crime and trying to resolve community issues.
There are roles to suit different interests and skills and your career path is flexible. Our new Graduate Programme, Police Now, offers internal and external internships and on completion of the programme supports candidates wishing to move onto jobs outside of Policing.
What are the biggest challenges you face in your work?
Initially I found that my risk management and problem solving skills were really tested. This can be a bit overwhelming, especially as your decisions have real consequences but having settled into the role I now enjoy the challenge this brings.
The predominantly negative image of Police Officers portrayed by the media can be incredibly frustrating.
What top tips would you pass on to a student interested in this type of work?
Police Now is looking for the brightest and best graduates, who want to make a difference. As well as being incredibly bright we are looking for well rounded candidates with fantastic interpersonal skills.
Police Now are looking to run some skills sessions at UCL later in the academic year so keep an eye out for these.
Want to find out more?