OPP drone

"Technology is advancing and we are looking for people who have the skills that can help us advance into the future as well," OPP Sergeant Peter Leon said Tuesday, noting that today's force is a far cry from the one he joined in 1988 when everything was done on paper. (OPP)

The OPP is hoping to bolster its technological know-how by snagging new grads destined for the tech industry, putting the nearly century-old police force in direct competition with technology startups.  

Provincial police announced Tuesday that they would be taking applications for 50 people to attend an upcoming police symposium on March 5, 2016 at Sherdian College in Brampton. 

There, the force will gather to discuss the role of technology in the ongoing fight against crime and the hope is the civilian attendees will not only get a taste about what life as a police officer is all about, but like it. 

"Technology is advancing and we are looking for people who have the skills that can help us advance into the future as well," OPP Sergeant Peter Leon said Tuesday. "Back in 1988 when I became a police officer everything was done on paper."

OPP offers something beyond office slides, go-karts

"[Today] the OPP is using unmanned aerial vehicles that are taking not only photographic images, but with the software that's available, [recreating] collision scenes," he said. "It's all based on software, where back a number of years ago you were literally with a piece of paper and a pencil doing mathematical calculations."

The call for new recruits with technological know-how puts the force in direct competition for talent with tech startups. 

While Leon acknowledges that OPP detachments may not have an office slide or go-karts, like some tech firms, they do offer something that most tech firms don't. 

"When you leave work at the end of the day you can certainly feel you've made a significant difference because you've helped someone," he said.