Citizens Academy

Citizens Academy

The next FBI Citizens Academy will be held in spring 2017 at the Washington Field Office. The application period for the 2017 Washington Citizens Academy is currently open. The application deadline is January 13, 2017. Due to high demand, the selection process is competitive and acceptance is not guaranteed.

Please download nomination and application forms here.


FBI WFO Citizens Academy Graduating Class 2016

FBI WFO Citizens Academy Graduating Class 2016


The Citizens Academy provides business, religious, civic, and community leaders with an inside look at the FBI, building mutually beneficial relationships along the way.

The goal of the Citizens Academy is to:

  • To be a catalyst for improving the quality of life within the individual communities through law enforcement-related and awareness programs;
  • To project a positive image of the FBI in the communities we serve and to build new partnerships and initiatives within these venues;
  • To improve our understanding of the individual community by establishing and enhancing the flow of information between the FBI and the community; and
  • To identify crime problems affecting specific communities not currently being addressed and to develop proactive initiatives that respond to those problems.

The Curriculum

Attendees typically gather one night a week over the course of six to eight weeks and learn about the mission, goals, history, and inner workings of the Bureau. They are provided with an overview of FBI and Department of Justice policies and procedures; background on the structure and operations of an FBI field office and resident agency; details on the legal basis for our jurisdiction and issues relating to congressional oversight; a summary of the services we provide to local and state law enforcement agencies; and firearms demonstrations. Attendees are also given practical problems involving the collection and preservation of physical evidence.

The curriculum and teaching methods are similar to those used at the FBI Academy. The classes are taught by FBI staff and/or representatives deemed appropriate by the special agent in charge. The following topics are included in the Citizens Academy curriculum:

  • Terrorism
  • Cyber crime
  • Counterintelligence
  • Public corruption
  • Major thefts/violent crimes
  • Field Intelligence Group
  • White-collar crime
  • InfraGard
  • Civil rights

Entrance Requirements

Potential candidates include business, civic, religious, or community leaders who:

  • Must be at least 18 years of age;
  • Must have no prior felony convictions;
  • Must live or work within the jurisdiction of the Washington Field Office; and,
  • Must pass a security check assessment.

Any of the above requirements can be waived upon review and approval of the special agent in charge.


Citizens Academy candidates are selected by the special agent in charge of the Washington Field Office, with the help of the community outreach specialist, using a nomination process. Citizens Academy Alumni Associations are prohibited from being part of the selection process.

After candidates are selected, a security check assessment is conducted by the security specialist, community outreach specialist, or other assigned employee. Once approved, candidates are notified by letter and provided with an application to determine their interest. Each selectee is also asked to submit appropriate documents to the community outreach specialist. Each class includes between 20 and 50 community leaders.