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Aside from special purpose law enforcement agencies, such as the U.S. Marshall's Service and the FBI, the United States does not have a national police force, but each state does have its own state police force. State police officers are often called state troopers. State troopers are typically more highly trained and paid somewhat more than regular city or county police officers.
Illinois State Trooper Requirements
To serve as a state trooper in Illinois, you must have a bachelor's degree or an associate's degree and three continuous years of law enforcement experience, be a U.S. citizen, possess a valid driver's license, have no felony convictions and be willing to accept assignments all over the state of Illinois.
State Trooper Academy
All state troopers must attend a rigorous six-month academy where they are taught the latest law enforcement best practices, physical skills including self-defense and restraint techniques, firearms training, emergency motorcycle and automobile driving training and more. Academy cadets live at the academy but can usually go home on the weekends. Cadets are paid at the base rate while attending the academy.
Academy cadets and troopers in their first six months of service are paid at the base rate of $48,192 per year. After six months of active trooper duty, Illinois state troopers are taken off of probationary status and are paid $54,904 annually. After another six months a trooper will reach one year of service and be paid $57,708 per year.
Pay by Seniority
Illinois state trooper salaries increase significantly with seniority. According to the 2012 Illinois State Police Sworn Salary Schedule, a trooper with two years of experience earns $60,455 annually, a trooper first class with five years of experience earns $71,138, a master trooper with 15 years of experience earns $91,484 and a sergeant with 25 years of experience earns $122,554.
Clayton Browne has been writing professionally since 1994. He has written and edited everything from science fiction to semiconductor patents to dissertations in linguistics, having worked for Holt, Rinehart & Winston, Steck-Vaughn and The Psychological Corp. Browne has a Master of Science in linguistic anthropology from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.