3.30.81: The Day Reagan was Shot


Instructor's introduction:  The United States Secret Service is a federal law enforcement agency that is part of the United States Department of Homeland Security.


Now read the following names and dates.

  • Abraham Lincoln  1865
  • James A. Garfield 1881
  • William McKinley 1901
  • John F. Kennedy 1963

Explain how these President's were assassinated.

Additionally, the Secret Service investigates thousands of incidents a year of individuals threatening the President of the United States. The President of the United States, Barack Obama faces 30 death threats a day.

Now take the cadets back to March 30, 1981.

3.30.81: The day Reagan was shot.

Discuss video and what it takes to be an agent.

  • Most Secret Service agents concentrate on tracking counterfeit money. 
  • A small percentage of agents focus on protecting the President and Vice President (present, past and candidates), their families and certain foreign heads of state.

Animals employed

The Canine Explosives Detection Unit (K-9): Created in 1976, the mission of the K-9 unit is to provide skilled and specialized explosives detection support to protective efforts involving Secret Service protectees.


Uniformed Division officers carry out their protective responsibilities through a network of fixed security posts, foot, bicycle, vehicular and motorcycle patrols.


 Who might be an agent in this photo? Why are they dressed that way?

Who might be an agent in this photo? Why are they dressed that way?

Special Agents of the Secret Service wear attire that is appropriate for the surroundings. In many circumstances, the attire is a conservative suit, but attire can range from a tuxedo to blue jeans.

The attire for Uniformed Division Officers includes standard police uniforms and ballistic/identification vests for members of the countersniper team & Emergency Response Team.



Why do they wear sunglasses?

Secret service agents wear sunglasses not to hide their identities but simply to guard their eyes from sun reflection, so they are able to see their surroundings better.

Ready to sign up?

You will need a college degree and a clean criminal record to apply to be a Secret Service agent, followed by 11 weeks of basic police training and 16 additional weeks learning about fraud detection and personal protection. 


Secret Service agents receive the finest law enforcement training in the world. New agent trainees are initially sent to the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, Glynco, Georgia, where they are enrolled in the Criminal Investigator Training Program.