PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — After more than eight months of training, nine recruits have officially joined the ranks of the South Dakota Highway Patrol.

The new troopers completed basic law enforcement training and a special academy for Highway Patrol recruits. They have been in field training since May.

At a graduation ceremony in the state Capitol building in Pierre, South Dakota Lt. Gov. Matt Michels told the new troopers that every action they take and every ticket they write will help motivate people to obey the law.

After the ceremony, the recruits left for their initial duty stations. Some were scheduled for duty the day after the ceremony.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.