Creating Career Instructors for Students Interested in Public Safety Telecommunications

The Career Instructor Program (CIP) is an APCO International initiative offered through the APCO Institute designed to address the nationwide staffing shortages facing emergency communication centers. CIP provides students and educators exposure to the public safety communications industry through APCO membership benefits and training opportunities.

A key element of CIP is the creation of a pathway for individuals who are state or locally-certified to teach secondary or post-secondary students the APCO Public Safety Telecommunicator 1, 7th Edition course.

The overarching goal of CIP is to provide prospective public safety telecommunicators with an industry-recognized credential to support their transition from the educational pipeline to the workforce.



CIP allows instructors teaching for career and technical programs at secondary and post-secondary institutions to deliver the APCO Public Safety Telecommunicator 1 course to their students without course registration or certification fees*.

To qualify, applicants must:

  • Be a current APCO Educator Member.
  • Be certified/licensed by their local or state teacher certification body.
  • Be currently employed by a secondary or post-secondary school.
  • Not be a current employee of a public safety communications center.

* A fee of $99 per student instruction manual will apply for the course.

How to Become a Career Instructor

  1. Complete the online application.
  2. Upload CIP Letter of Verification completed by your institution.
  3. Once your application is approved, register for the online PST 7th Edition course, provided at no cost to you.
  4. Complete the CIP Orientation course within 30 days of completing the PST 7th Edition course.
  5. Check the CIP page periodically as it provides progress updates throughout the application process.

Please contact [email protected] with any questions.

Next Steps

You will be required to perform the following steps to teach at your school:

  • Purchase an APCO educator membership ($29 annually)**
  • Submit a completed CIP application and a CIP Letter of Verification
  • Complete the PST 7th Edition student course at no charge to you.
    Note: Your course registration includes a downloadable course manual. If you prefer a hardcover manual, it is available for $99 during the registration process.
  • Complete the CIP Orientation course.

** To purchase the educator membership, you must not hold a different membership through APCO.

Additional Information

  • Once you successfully complete the CIP process, you will be appointed as a career instructor and able to purchase instructional manuals for your students.
  • Throughout your training, you will be provided with information regarding the process for submitting your completed courses and the issuance of your student’s certificates.
  • You must revalidate every two years to remain current as an APCO Career Instuctor.

Please email [email protected] with any questions about the program or application process.