A simple Facebook post led to help for an entire class of high school students. “I graduated from Scarlet Oaks in 1986,” said Cincinnati police officer Cary Jodice. “I keep track of the program online, and one day a Facebook mention about uniforms caught my attention.”
Jodice, who came from a single-parent household, said the social media post triggered memories. “It clicked in my mind about how rough it can be for a high school student who comes from a family that’s financially struggling.”
His intent was to adopt one high school student in the hope of providing a uniform, so he contacted Scarlet Oaks Law Enforcement instructor Jen Frith. Frith told him that there were a number of students in need, and Jodice got to work. “I decided that my goal should be to provide uniforms for as many students as possible.”
He contacted friends in law enforcement and Great Oaks alumni, and was overwhelmed by the response. The Cheviot Police Explorer Post gave $1000. Cheviot city employees passed the hat throughout all departments and collected an additional $500.
From an original goal of helping one student, Officer Jodice raised more than $3,000, which he presented to the Great Oaks Education Foundation through Law Enforcement instructor Jen Frith. Frith said that the funds would support students in need for several years.
“It makes me so happy to know that my students have the support of current law enforcement officers and prior graduates of the Scarlet Oaks law enforcement program,” said Frith. My students are the future of law enforcement, and they know that someone cares about them and supports them in their dream to pursue this calling. Officer Jodice also introduced me to many other officers who have volunteered to help my students as guest speakers and in other ways as well.”
“As a public school, our high school students don’t pay tuition or fees,” said Great Oaks Community Relations Director Jon Weidlich. “But the cost of a uniform can be a real barrier for some who are working hard toward a career. Officer Jodice’s efforts could make all the difference for those students.”
“I fulfilled my dream of becoming a police officer,” said Jodice. “When I’m retiring, they’ll just be starting their careers. I didn’t plan to do this; it just happened. But I hope that the students understand they have to help each other out. After all, that’s the kind of profession and the thin blue line brotherhood they’re going into.”