Man: You OK, man? Man: You mother f—–. Recruit: Put the bat down! Police! Drop the bat! Christopher Fagan: I want
you to take all the notions that you have about what
we do in the Secret Service that you’ve seen on the movies and on TV shows, and I want you to throw it out the window. The Secret Service is the
premier law-enforcement agency in the world. It is by far the best protective
agency that’s ever been. The Secret Service has
a zero-fail mission. That is now your responsibility. That is now the weight on your shoulders. Now you have to earn it every single day. Narrator: This is Secret Service boot camp. Before they join the Secret Service, all recruits have to graduate from the agency’s
six-month training program. Training happens here, at the James J. Rowley Training
Center in Laurel, Maryland, located about 20 miles
north of Washington. Fagan: Welcome to the James J. Rowley United States Secret
Service Training Center. Narrator: On day one,
a new class of recruits arrives at the academy. Fagan: Have a seat. Every one of you sitting here right now, there was about 100 other
applicants that tried to get the seat that you have earned. How did you earn that seat? You earned that seat by getting through our
very, very difficult and in-depth vetting process. And you should be congratulated. And I hope you celebrated, because the celebration time is over. Now’s the time for business. Everybody clear on that? On Saturday, you will depart… Narrator: Before they begin
their Secret Service-specific training, these recruits
will spend three months at the Federal Law
Enforcement Training Center in Artesia, New Mexico. Recruit: Get back in the building, now! Narrator: Before returning to Maryland for three more months
of focused training… that includes driving, marksmanship, hand-to-hand combat, and realistic threat scenarios. Fagan: You’re gonna hear
a phrase over and over and over again throughout your training, in particular this week. The Secret Service has
a zero-fail mission. What that means in layman’s terms, ladies and gentlemen, is this: You don’t get a bad day
in the Secret Service. There’s plenty of other pursuits
out there, noble pursuits. Lawyers, plumbers, firemen, doctors. If one of those folks has a
rough night the night before, stays out late, they have
to deal with their boss, some kind of disciplinary action. If you have a bad day and you don’t do your job, you’re going to change the world. Is there anyone that doesn’t
want to proceed at this point? All right. Then let’s get down to business. Narrator: We spent three
days at the training center, where we observed recruits at
various stages of training. Fagan: It’s going to be a long week. Narrator: For the new class,
their first week focuses on a physical evaluation. Recruit: Let’s go! Let’s
go! Don’t stop! Don’t stop! Narrator: And getting
rid of any bad habits they may have brought into the academy. Fagan: We left yesterday
without chairs being pushed in, and now we can’t pay attention to detail one minute after the detail’s given out. And we’re laughing and joking in here. It is going to be an extremely long week. Do not make plans for
Friday getting out of here on time, ’cause that ain’t happening. Narrator: Although we were
allowed to film inside the academy, our access was limited, and we were only able to film
certain aspects of training, the rest of which remained secret. Michael Buck: There’s certain
things that we will not be able to show yourself or any other members of the media here, and that’s really for the
safety of our protectees. We don’t wanna advertise
our playbook, so to speak. Narrator: For example,
we weren’t able to film any training that incorporated
this partial replica of Air Force One, used to
create specific scenarios where the president is threatened. Buck: We don’t want to
give people specifics into our protective methodologies
that we have in place for some of our protection. Clearly, some of those
things we cannot share. And that’s really to make sure that we’re not giving any sort of an advantage to any of our adversaries out there. Clip: The United States Secret Service, America’s first line of defense against the counterfeiter
and their crimes. Narrator: The Secret
Service was founded in 1865. It’s primary mission: to combat the counterfeiting
of US currency. Clip: The famed Secret Service, whose foremost duty is
protecting the president of the United States and his family. Narrator: The Secret Service
began its protective mission after the 1901 assassination of President William McKinley. Gus Gennerich: I am the
president’s personal bodyguard. I go where he goes. I wanna say that anybody
who has no business with him better look out. And believe me, I don’t mean maybe. Narrator: Since the Secret Service began its protective mission, the president has remained a target. Since 1901, President Kennedy
has been the sole president to die at the hands of an assassin, despite numerous attempts by others. Like in 1994. Woman: Oh, my God! [gunshots] Narrator: When a gunman
opened fire on the White House while President Clinton
watched a football game inside. Man: Put it down! Put it down! Buck: Due to the weight
of our protective mission, we have to make sure that
anyone in those positions is truly worthy of trust and confidence, which is our motto here. We’re getting ready to go
into another campaign year, so we have to build up our workforce in order to help support that. Narrator: The base salary
for new agents and officers starts as low as $47,000 a year. Potential recruits apply on
the Secret Service website, but most applicants are eliminated during an intense vetting process. Fagan: Generally, it
takes quite a long time in order to get through
our screening process. The very in-depth background checks, qualification to obtain a top-secret
clearance and maintain one, to undergo a polygraph examination, successfully pass that. They have a lot to be proud of just for the fact that
they’re sitting here. Recruit: Stay right there. Instructor: One thing to understand, guys: This is not a video game. Narrator: In this
exercise, recruits interact with a video screen that plays a scenario involving a potential
threat to a protectee. Recruit: Sir, drop it!
Stop moving! Stop moving! Narrator: And are judged
on how quickly they’re able to assess and respond to the threat. Instructor: So, there’s the
gun I knew I was gonna find. What can I do with this? Narrator: Recruits also
engage with role players, who create realistic
law-enforcement scenarios. Man: All right, I’ll just
hang out over here, officer. Recruit: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Narrator: Working in motor vehicles plays a big part in training, in what the academy calls
“protective transportation.” Recruits train behind
the wheel of high-speed Dodge Challengers and Chevy Suburbans. Thomas Murach: The
Secret Service’s mission is to get protectees safely
from point A to point B. The training that we provide
enhances that mission, that foundational driving
that they are going to need to be effective Secret Service agents. Instructor: All right, is
everybody ready? All right. Narrator: Recruits also
experience a rollover simulator to prepare them for what it’s like inside a vehicle that’s flipped over. Instructor: Next four up. Narrator: The instructor
allowed us in the simulator. Graham Flanagan: I’m upside down. Narrator: To experience
it from the inside. Recruits spend hours on the firing range. They cross paths with active agents who’ve come back to the academy
for in-service training. Recruit: Drop the weapon! Narrator: Recruits engage
in water-based scenarios, including being challenged to
escape from this apparatus. Which simulates being
trapped in a helicopter that’s flipped upside down underwater. Instructor: You guys good?
You still wanna be here? Recruits: Yes, ma’am! Instructor: You guys ready
to do some team tactics? Recruits: Yes, ma’am! Narrator: Recruits learn control tactics used to detain and subdue an assailant. Recruit: Drop the knife! Drop
the knife! Drop the knife! Narrator: Male and female
recruits train together throughout basic training. Of the approximately 7,000
people in the Secret Service, less than 25% are female. Instructor: I’m gonna come
around and check your seals one more time. Narrator: One of the most
challenging parts of training occurs when the recruits
are exposed to tear gas. Narrator: We couldn’t
bring our camera inside the gas chamber, but we
did convince an officer to shoot inside with an iPhone, showing us what it’s like for recruits when they’re exposed to the gas. We weren’t allowed to interview recruits during training or to film at graduation. Once training is complete, these future agents and officers begin their zero-fail mission against the backdrop of
an intense election year in a nation divided by politics. Fagan: We protect the
Office of the President. We’re not political appointees. It doesn’t matter to us
who the people elect. We’re gonna protect those individuals with the same zealousness
that we would regardless. Political opinions don’t
come into play at all. What we’re focused on is
training, preparing them to do the job that
they’re gonna need to do, and that’s all that counts for us.