MERIDEN, CT (WFSB) -- The annual State Police Youth Week is underway in Meriden.

High school students from across the state have been getting an inside look at the training, duties, and expectations of state troopers.

"You learn that you're capable of doing anything, and then it becomes very easy,” said Ava Britton, of Southbury.

Over the course of a week, the cadets tackle everything from firearms training, to water safety, to criminal investigations, to team building and leadership exercises.

At the Connecticut Police Academy in Meriden on Friday, 19 cadets were learning about executing building searches.

"We try to do a classroom piece, where we're doing an instruction, and then we doing something either out in the community, or here on the Academy campus that shows what it is that we're talking about,” said CT State Police Trooper Kate Cummings.

Everything they do emphasizes the importance of teamwork and overcoming adversity.

"Day one, they're so overwhelmed. They've never been through that kind of stress. Watching them develop as an individual is amazing. They come out so confident in who they are and what their actual abilities are, and that's really what the program is grounded in,” said CT State Police Trooper Jason St. John.

The cadets also say they’re seeing that change within themselves.

"I just love seeing my transformation from how I was in the beginning and how I am now,” said Alex Illescas, of Bethel.

The week ends on Saturday, but the cadets will never forget the training they received, and the memories they’ve made.

Copyright 2019 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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