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Sunnyside senior sets goals and gives back

TUCSON – On Thursday, when 18-year old Nathen Drow graduates from Sunnyside High School, he will be completing one goal and will be onto the next one.

For three years Drow has been attending career and technical education classes that are JTED sponsored. His interests are law and public safety. He said as a freshman he decided to go into law enforcement when he graduated.

His teacher, Patti Thibaut said he has already earned college credit from Pima Community College with these classes. She has been teaching for eight years and she retired from Tucson Police Department.

In March, Sgt. Tony Kelly of the Pima County Sheriff’s Department spoke to the class and encouraged the students to think about a career with the sheriff’s department. He is with the corrections department but is recruiting for all departments. That includes communications, deputies, corrections officer and civilian positions.

What struck a chord with Drow is that to become a corrections officer you had to be 18 and a high school graduate. Kelly also told the students if they wanted to become a deputy their chances were very good if they start out as a correction officer and then when they turned 21 they could test for deputy.

Kelly also told them they were looking for people who had strong core values to include integrity and giving back to the community.

This is something Drow is very familiar with. As part of his senior project, the Sunnyside Blue Devil football player began collecting cleats for youth football players in Hermosillo, Sonora. He told News 4 Tucson he “wanted to give them a chance to have a new pair of cleats because it could change a kid’s whole attitude in the way they play the sport.” He added he wanted to give them a chance to perform to the best of their abilities.

Drow applied as a corrections officer shortly after Kelly spoke to the class. He has gone through the lengthy process of taking tests, interviews and even taking a polygraph.

Kelly said Drow has a couple of steps left before he can have a final job offer but it is looking “real good,” he added.

On Thursday as he walks down the football field for the last time as a student, he accomplished his goal of completing his classes in law enforcement and there is a good chance he will be walking into a classroom in June to become a corrections officer.

Lupita Murillo

Lupita Murillo

Lupita Murillo is an investigative reporter. She is part of the Digging Deeper team that uncovers important issues focusing on crime that affects the community.
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