Pennsylvania State Police Seeks Applicants for Annual Youth Camp

Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) in collaboration with the Pennsylvania National Guard and American Legion are seeking applicants for its annual youth camp. The "Elmer Hafer-American Legion-State Police-National Guard Youth Camp" will be held June 11-17, 2023, at Messiah University in Mechanicsburg, Cumberland County.

The six-day summer leadership camp is designed for teenagers, ages 15 to 17, interested in pursuing a career in law enforcement or the military. The camp, established in 1970 and formerly known as State Police Youth Week, works to improve the relationship between Pennsylvania's youth and the law enforcement community. This year's camp will mark the 51st camp held since its inception.

"I encourage young Pennsylvanians interested in pursuing a career in law enforcement or the military to take advantage of this unique, no-cost opportunity," said PSP Colonel Christopher Paris. "Attendees will make memories that will last a lifetime and get a feel for what career of service would be like."

The week-long camp is staffed by members of the PSP, the Pennsylvania Army National Guard and the American Legion. During the camp, cadets work on team-building exercises, physical fitness training, classroom activities involving police and military careers and a marksmanship course. Cadets will also visit the PSP Academy in Hershey and Fort Indiantown Gap National Guard Training Center in Lebanon County. In addition, the camp offers three $1,000 scholarship awards at the conclusion of the week.

Anyone interested in applying for the camp must be between the ages of 15 and 17 prior to entering the camp and not reach the age of 18 during the camp. Cadets who have previously attended the camp are not eligible to apply again. Applicants are expected to have a good academic record, be physically fit and be in good health. Participants attend the camp at no cost, as their local American Legion post sponsors their attendance. Interested applicants can read more about the camp by visiting The application can be found by visiting the legion's application page.  

Furthermore, regional camp cadet programs are also hosted by state police personnel. The week-long camp cadet programs are for Pennsylvanians ages 11-15. To inquire about the availability of a camp cadet near you, contact your local troop community services officer.

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Media Contacts

Adam Reed

State Police Media

Myles Snyder

State Police Media