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As a security guard or gaming surveillance officer, you help make the world a little safer – patrolling and protecting people and property against theft, vandalism and other illegal activity.
Most security guard jobs require a high school diploma. Gaming surveillance officers sometimes need experience with security and video surveillance. You’ll need to be registered in most states, especially if you carry a firearm.
Security guards must be alert and aware of their surroundings for extended periods of time. You’ll need to be able to quickly recognize anything out of the ordinary and promptly determine the best course of action if a dangerous situation arises. You must have the physical strength to apprehend offenders and to handle emergency situations.
By the two year mark you will have received initial classroom and on-the-job training on emergency procedures, detention of suspected criminals and proper communication. Many states recommend that security guards receive an additional 8 hours of training each year.
After five years, you may have the opportunity to advance to supervisory or security manager positions. Experience and/or postsecondary education typically increase your chances. Armed security guards have a greater potential for advancement and enjoy higher earnings.
Some guards with management skills open their own security guard business. You might also move to an organization that needs higher levels of security, which can result in more prestige and higher pay.