NEWARK, Ohio, March 20, 2017 – A Central Ohio Technical College (COTC) Basic Police Academy (BPA) graduate was recently named 2016 Knox County Sheriff's Deputy of the Year. Travis Thomas, 37, graduated from COTC in 2006.
"It's really an honor that I don't feel like I deserve," said Thomas. "I am humbled to have received the award."
Thomas was nominated for the award by his fellow deputies. He is known at the department for his kindness and professionalism.
"When I deal with people I am polite. I always treat people the way I would want to be treated," said Thomas. "My job is to help people. I'm there to help people in their times of crisis. Law enforcement is not all about showing up and arresting people. Sometimes people just need someone to talk to, and I try to treat people with respect."
Thomas believes he learned much of what has made him a good deputy at COTC.
"I graduated from high school in the Columbus area and then served in the U.S. Marines. When I got out of the military, I worked in a factory for a while," said Thomas. "After serving our country, there was this calling to law enforcement. It's something I really wanted to do, so I enrolled in the BPA at COTC."
The BPA prepares students to meet the requirements of the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission. Graduates are recommended to take the state certification examination to become a peace officer in Ohio. Graduates also earn 22.5 credits toward an Associate of Applied Science in Law Enforcement Technology.
"The BPA was excellent. It laid the foundation for where I'm at today."
COTC was ranked number one in Ohio and number 19 in the nation by PayScale in its 2016-17 College Salary Report ranking the best community and career colleges by salary potential. COTC is a fully accredited, public college dedicated to providing high-quality, accessible programs of technical education in response to current and emerging employment needs. COTC is the only technical college in Ohio operating four full-service campus locations: Newark, Coshocton, Knox and Pataskala.