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FILE PHOTO: State Police line the route of a funeral procession in Johnstown. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

(Harrisburg) — The Pennsylvania State Police is graduating one of its larger classes, and it might be because of an effort to get prospective cadets accustomed beforehand to what 27 challenging weeks of academy training is like.

The agency graduated 103 cadets in the 155th graduating cadet class Friday.

A spokesman says graduating classes are typically between 90 or 95 cadets, as the agency races to fill positions vacated by retiring troopers.

Starting with this class, the recruitment services section tried something new to help cadets avoid washing out of training.

Recruiters invited prospective cadets for a “cadet life tour” a few weeks before they reported.

Spokesman Ryan Tarkowski says it gives prospective cadets a look at academy life and a chance to build friendships with fellow recruits that can help them succeed.