The San Diego County Sheriff's Department and District Attorney's Office are once again hosting a joint Citizens' Academy that is designed to offer San Diego County residents a behind-the-scenes look at the criminal justice system. This engaging and informative program is designed to increase understanding of the operations and methodology of the Sheriff's Department and District Attorney's Office and how law enforcement and the justice system intersect.

Although the program is offered at no cost, applicants must pass a background check and be willing to commit to attend a 6-week curriculum on one evening each week.

Participants who are selected from the competitive application process will have the unique opportunity to hear directly from subject matter experts in local law enforcement. A diverse program of topics ranges from the opioid epidemic to use-of-force. Participants will also have special access to the Sheriff's Department weapons simulator exercise.

Application Process

The Citizens' Academy is a six-week commitment that will be held on Tuesday evenings from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the County Operations Center in Kearny Mesa. Committed and regular attendance is imperative.

Prospective participations for the Citizens' Academy must:

  • Live in San Diego County;
  • Be at least 18 years old;
  • Commit to the six-week academy; and
  • Must pass a background check

The academy is free to San Diego County residents 18 years and older. Class size is limited, and spaces fill up quickly.

REGISTER NOW - Citizens' Academy Application

The last day to apply is September 9th.

Submit completed applications via email, fax or mail:

  • Email:
  • Fax: 619-237-1351
  • Mail: Attention: Citizens’ Academy, 330 W. Broadway, Ste. 1300, San Diego, CA 92101

For more information please contact or call (619) 531-3531.