Quantico | April 20, 2016
AVID middle and high schools program embraced a rare, personal tour of The FBI Academy, facility and grounds, located on the United States Marine Corps Basein Quantico, Virginia. The Academy opened its doors in the summer of 1972 and is situated on 547 wooded acres of land providing the security, privacy, and safe environment necessary to carry out the diverse training and operations functions for which the Federal Bureau of Investigation is responsible. A Special Agent was assigned as the tour guide and provided insight into how the FBI agents, cadets, and civilian employees spend a typical day in the FBI. They toured all the facilities including: the new J. Edgar Hoover Library, various shooting ranges, training classrooms, the Hall of Honor, multiple physical fitness facilities, dormitories, and a September 11th Memorial garden that was donated by graduating classes of the FBI National Academy. In addition to visiting the main complex, the group was able to visit the famous mock city known as Hogan's Alley. Hogan's Alley consists of facades replicating a realistic urban setting, where agents and cadets conduct simulated missions. Hogan's Alley is used to teach agents investigative techniques, firearms skills, and defensive tactics. Scenarios involve investigations of terrorist activities, planning and making arrests, processing evidence at crime scenes, conducting interviews and searches, and clearing areas and buildings so they are safe to enter. Behind the facades are fully functioning classrooms, audiovisual facilities, storage areas, and administrative and maintenance offices used to educate and train academy members. A functioning Subway now has a place of honor in Hogan's Alley and is slated to open within the next few months. Internships, employment, and research opportunities available with the FBI were also discussed. This experience was characterized by the group as invaluable, unforgettable and a once-in-a-lifetime experience for all.