Twelve people enrolled in the Bismarck Citizen’s Academy are receiving hands on training from about 15 city departments.

The class will last a total of 8 weeks.

“We focused primarily on internal customer service, in other words the city administration department, the city commission which is obviously very forward facing, but then we also touched on the legal department, the human resources department,” Bismarck Assistant City Administrator Jason Tomanek said.

Bismarck resident Jean King learned about the program and believes this is a positive need in the community.

“It’s a lot of disinformation and misinformation about how our government does work. The question is if people who really need to take the class show up?” King said.

Learning will not just be inside of the classroom all 8 weeks.

“We plan to do tours of facilities like public works, and the water treatment plant. We’ll be visiting the police station and one of the fire stations,” Tomanek said.

Information so valuable King said she will refer a friend.

“I don’t always go to programs like that because I have hearing loss. Participating in a group like that is tough for me, but I can think of several people I would like to send,” King said.

The city is looking to make this a biannual event in hopes of getting more participants engaged.

“I think being acquainted with your local civil servants is always a good idea. The more we know each other, the better we function together,” King said.

The class will meet once a week for 3 hours during the eight week sessions.

Out of 60 applications, 12 people were chosen to attend the free academy.