Eight fresh officers have hit the beat in Newcastle after graduating from the police academy on Friday.
The six men and two women, who all have ties to the Hunter region, had their first day on the job on Monday and will complete a probationary year before being confirmed to the rank of constable.
It was a tough induction to the career for the contingent. They were thrust into lockdown while at the academy in Goulburn, unable to make weekend trips to see their family to unwind from the grueling training.
Probationary Constable Lauren Hughes said the experience was the most emotionally difficult thing she has ever done, but was now looking forward to getting stuck into the role.
"Training wise physically, I think I did alright," she said. "I'm pretty physically fit, but being locked in for that long without seeing family or friends - you actually don't get a break, which is what they encourage you to do being in such a demanding job.
"So I think dealing with that, it was quite a struggle. But now we're in a real job now. So I'll be able to have that break, have that time for my family and friends, and just regroup."
Newcastle received the most recruits in the Northern Region from the 218 who graduated on Friday. Four went to Lake Macquarie and Port Stephens Hunter received three.
"I always ask for a lot [of recruits], and I will continue to ask for a lot," Newcastle City Police commander Detective Superintendent Wayne Humphrey said. "But there's an expectation that a command the size of Newcastle that will always take as many probationary constables as we can."
Superintendent Humphrey said the new recruits will experience everything about being a police officer, including being exposed to "the darker side of life".
Probationary Constable Elliot Pankhurst, who joined the force to help people and make a difference, said he was feeling "wide-eyed, nervous, excited, keen" but most of all enthusiastic.
"I want to learn, be a part of the community, be a part of Newcastle more than I was and just make a difference in someone's life," he said.
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