The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Academy, located on the grounds on the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) in Glynco, Georgia, provides basic and advanced training to HSI special agents, task force officers and other law enforcement personnel. To become a HSI special agent, special agent-trainees must pass both FLETC’s Criminal Investigator Training Program (CITP) and the Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent Training (HSISAT).
CITP is a 56-day program that provides HSI special agent trainees, as well as criminal investigators from other federal agencies, with an understanding of basic criminal investigative techniques. Seasoned HSI special agents, along with instructors from FLETC and numerous other federal agencies, bring their expertise and knowledge to instruct trainees on topics such as criminal law, enforcement operations, courtroom testimony and other interdisciplinary approaches to becoming an effective criminal investigator in today’s fast-paced and changing world. Lectures, laboratories, practical exercises and written exams are used to ensure that each trainee acquires the knowledge, skills and abilities required of new criminal investigators. During the program, trainees participate as members of a small task force and complete a continuing case investigation.
After successfully completing CITP, special agent-trainees commence HSISAT, a 71-day program managed by the HSI academy and taught by experienced HSI special agents who serve as subject matter experts in various investigative programmatic areas. Special agents certified as firearms and defensive tactics instructors, as well as HSI Special Response Team members, instruct special-agent trainees in firearms, defensive tactics, subject control and tactical building entries. Additional legal and integrity training is provided by the ICE Office of the Chief Counsel attorneys and Office of Professional Responsibility special agents.
During HSISAT, special agent-trainees receive comprehensive instruction, practice and evaluation in customs and immigration law, border search authority, interviewing, cyber-crimes, child exploitation, surveillance, human smuggling and trafficking investigations, drug smuggling, document and benefit fraud, counter-proliferation investigations, transnational gang investigations, national security investigations, affidavit preparation, investigative planning and case management.
During HSISAT, trainees are evaluated through a series of practical exercises that simulate realistic investigative and tactical scenarios that are geared to ensure that newly-minted special agents can act safely and proficiently in the field. Additionally, special agent-trainees are required to participate in a strenuous physical fitness training regime and pass the required physical fitness test (PFT) three times during CITP and HSISAT.
Both CITP and HSISAT are accredited law enforcement training programs by the Federal Law Enforcement Training Accreditation (FLETA) Board.