City of Fort Smith Citizens Academy is a program modeled after the Fort Smith Police
Department’s long-running Citizens Police Academy program. Citizens Academy is a
12-session program designed to provide citizens with “boots on the ground” experiences
with all facets of city government – from emergency services and sanitation operations
to the business of water and budgeting your tax dollars. Participants do much more
than sit and listen to city staffers talk about the services their departments provide.
Sessions are designed to provide information, as well as experiences. Holding a
fire hose helps the participant understand how much strength and endurance a firefighter
needs to battle a blaze. Touring a wastewater facility helps the citizen understand
the technical expertise – and the 24 hour monitoring – required by utilities employees.
Spending an evening at the sanitary landfill shows participants the chemical, biological,
ecological, and engineering sciences required to operate a safe and efficient waste