A Peek Behind the Curtains: Exclusive Chances to Learning about Fishers, Indiana

There are numerous chances to learn, but rarely do you get a chance to peek behind the curtain of many of the local political organizations to see how they really operate and what is truly involved. Within Fishers, Indiana, however, there are three programs that members of the public can apply to attend that do provide insights into the innerworkings of not only our local government, our local police force, but also our local school district. Each of the three programs are similar in how they accept participants as well as how they are structured overall.

Those that have experience with larger organizations or management generally know that things are never as simple as they seem. Whether it is a police force for a city of 100,000 people, the running of a city of 100,000 people or a school district with an annual budget of over a quarter of a billion (with a B) dollars serving nearly 22,000 kids, many things are not as simple as they seem. The following three programs provide detailed looks behind the curtains of each of these:

  • City of Fishers’ City Government Academy (CGA)
  • HSEngaged
  • Fishers Police Department Citizens Academy

Overview of the Programs

All three programs focus on providing insights into how each organization operates and what their overall responsibilities, influence, and challenges are. They are structured over the course of several months with meetings generally happening every couple of weeks. They are structured in a way to be respective of the attendees’ time while also covering as much information as possible. The meetings tend to vary in location depending on the topic being covered. For example, for the City Government Academy, meetings happen at the various offices and locations of the various government organizations. With Fishers being a City of 100,000 people, many of the offices and departments are spread across the city. I’ll cover more details on each program, their meetings, and their expectations later in this article.

It is worth noting that the City Government Academy has been happening for several years and thus is relatively established. The HSEngaged program has been through three or four sessions at this point and is still evolving just like the school district is evolving. As such, my comments here are a snapshot in time. As more people attend the programs and provide feedback, each will continue to evolve in its own ways.

Admission to the Programs

Admission to each of the programs is similar. Each expects the attendees to commit to attending all meetings – or nearly all. Some, such as the City Government Academy also expect attendees to attend some of the supplemental meetings as well.

Admission generally starts by applying to the programs. The links to apply to each program are included in my overviews later in this article. For many, the current sessions are already in session or soon to be happening. As such, if applying, you are likely looking at a later date. Additionally, the two of these that I’ve personally attended have had more people apply for each session than slots. As such, some people get placed on a waiting list or need to apply again for future sessions.

Each of these programs currently limits the number of participants. This allows for better interactivity within the sessions, which all include lots of time to not only learn, but also to ask questions and engage with the different departments and areas the attendees are learning about.

None of these programs charge a fee.

Program Details

So, what do you learn? Each of the three programs is unique in its own way. I’ve attended both the HSEngaged and the City Government Academy. A close friend is currently going through the Police Citizens Academy. Each academy has its own focus. I’ll include a registration or other links in the following sections for each of the three programs.

Next Page – (City Government Academy) >>

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