Last night was the first session of a “Retirement Academy” put on by the Eden Prairie Police Department in cooperation with the South Metro Public Safety Training Facility, located in Edina. The concept of the academy was developed when I was still working for the EPPD and exploring my retirement options. EPPD Training Sgt. Dave Becker took responsibility for putting the course together along with the help of several other department and city staff members. It is a very new concept and last night was our first glimpse of whether or not the idea would work. And clearly, it does!
There will be five sessions, each session held once a week for 2-3 hours in the evening. Session topics will cover transition impact of the eight facets of life, financial considerations, spiritual and emotional perspectives, relationship impacts and conclude with a panel discussion of retirees sharing their experiences.
Last night we had the great opportunity to have Dr Steven Geiger lead the opening session. Dr. Geiger has a very interesting background ranging from his early days as a police officer with Eden Prairie, to his experiences as a police psychologist with the Los Angeles Police Department to his current role as a successful business leader. His wide range of qualifications and experiences provided a great learning experience for the participants. He will return for week 4 to provide some follow-up and also share some thoughts on how relationships are impacted by the retirement transition.
I have the opportunity to host and MC the academy. It was a great experience last night and I look forward to the future sessions. I believe planning significant professional transitions is a critical component of spiritual fitness. My goal at the end of this academy is to provide a format for other agencies to put on similar training opportunities.
One thought that really hit me last night was that managing a career transition such as retirement isn’t really that complicated, but it definitely is a lot of hard work. A little training, planning and focusing can have a great impact on personal success in the transition.
I’ll keep you posted as the sessions progress!