The West German Government spends about $5,500 on each police recruit. Training begins at State-run police academies where strict character, intelligence, medical, and physical standards are imposed for entry. Applicants are between 17 and 26 years of age. During the 3 years of classroom instruction, courses are taught on Federal and State law, criminal and civil statutes, investigative procedures, traffic enforcement, and community relations. On the physical side, trainees learn automobile and motorcycle driving skills, gun firing and maintenance, police radio and computer operations, unarmed self-defense, and first aid procedures. Students receive practical training that applies classroom studies when they visit towns and cities for supervised police station work and for mobile and foot patrol duties. Academy graduates receive on-the-job training at both national and local levels. Three years of additional training are required for those moving to middle rank positions, and 2 more years are required for those aspiring to top echelon slots. Only the best 1 to 2 percent of students receive advanced schooling to prepare them for senior rank command responsibilities. West Germany's national police academy sponsors about 50 one-week conferences a year for approximately 2,000 West German law enforcement personnel to enhance their professional training.