Police Officer Qualifications


All sworn members of the Bureau of Police are permitted to reside within Lancaster County and any contiguous county (Berks, Chester, Dauphin, Lebanon, and York) within Pennsylvania. A candidate who is living outside the requirement, who is hired for the position of police officer, is required to establish residency no later than six (6) months after being hired.

Education Requirements

Equivalent to a high school diploma.


All candidates must be at least 21 years of age by academy graduation.

Physical Fitness Test & Requirements

Applicants must demonstrate a fitness level that would allow them to perform the essential job functions of a police officer. This physical agility test encompasses various job-specific physical activities arranged in an obstacle course format and executed continuously from start to end. This is a PASS/FAIL assessment based on the Virginia LAWFIT Work Performance Test.

Applicants are required to complete the test within one minute and thirty-six seconds.

Obstacle course challenges in order*:

  • Jump a distance of 3’ (feet)
  • Climb over a 5’ (feet) high wall
  • Crawl under an obstacle 24” (inches) high and 10’ (feet) in length
  • Climb up and down an 8” (inches) step for 12 repetitions
  • Crawl through a window opening (36” wide x 30” high x 3’ above the ground)
  • Identify the correct suspect and move a 150 lb dummy 5 yards
  • Trigger pull exercise

*Please be aware that you will be required to run/sprint (up to 25 yards) to reach each challenge.

Video demonstration coming soon!

Written Examination

You must pass a written examination with a minimum score of 70%. Prospective Lancaster City Police Officers are required to complete the Next Generation Entry-Level Law Enforcement Aptitude Test, a premier entry-level law enforcement examination. The NGLE combines a straightforward cognitive ability measure with multiple situational judgment measures. Candidates will be provided with a study guide at no cost and will take the test at home.

Oral Board Interview

You must pass the oral board interview with a minimum score of 70%. Prospective Lancaster City Police Officers are required to complete an Oral Board Interview. The interview will be conducted by two Police Supervisors and one representative from Lancaster City Human Resources. Applicants do not need any prior Law Enforcement experience in order to answer the questions. This interview will be conducted in person at the Lancaster City Police Station.

Other Requirements

  • You must be a U.S. Citizen
  • Minimum age in keeping with departmental requirements. (Presently 21 years of age on the date of academy graduation.)
  • Establishment of residency.
  • You must have a valid driver’s license prior to being hired.
  • You must pass a medical examination and drug screening.
  • You must pass a psychological assessment.
  • You must pass a polygraph exam.
  • You must pass an extensive background investigation.
  • You must be willing to work rotating shifts, carry firearms, and work in dangerous situations.

Learn more about MPOETC’s Basic Training, Waivers, and Transfers →

Prepare For the Police Academy

All candidates will be required to pass MPOETC’s physical fitness assessment to gain admission to the Police Academy once hired by the Lancaster City Bureau of Police. Candidates must be able to perform each of the following exercises in accordance with the indicated standards:

  • 1 Minute Sit-up
  • 300 Meter Run
  • 1 Minute Push-up
  • 1.5 Mile Run

The requirements for each event are based on age and gender. We strongly encourage every applicant to practice the test in its entirety*. Click on the link below for more details.

Learn more about MPOETC’s Physical Fitness Assessment Standards →

*Before beginning any new exercise program, please consult with your physician or a medically trained professional.

Proper Form:
Use the videos below as a guide when training to ensure your sit-ups and push-ups are counted on testing day.